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Regions

Comprehensive description of all European growing areas, their grape varieties, traditions and legal rules with maps.

Description to Burgenland

The federal state of Burgenland with its capital Eisenstadt is located in the very east of Austria. It borders Slovakia to the north, Hungary to the east, Slovenia for a few kilometres to the south and the two Austrian provinces of Lower Austria and Styria to the west. Viticulture has been of great importance here for two and a half millennia, which is underlined by the saying "Extra Pannoniam non es vita; si est vita, non est ita" (Outside Pannonia , one cannot live; if one can live, then not like here), originating from the historian Johannes Aventinus (1477-1534). Along with Stillfried in the Weinviertel, the village of Zagersdorf is one of the oldest wine-growing communities in Austria, because grape seeds of the cultivated vine Vitis vinifera were discovered in a Celtic burial mound from the Hallstatt period around 700 BC.

In the first century BC, the Romans penetrated as far as the Danube and founded the province of Pannonia (historical landscape in western Hungary, which also included today's Bgld., which only became part of Austria in 1920). A new wine culture was formed when Emperor Marcus Aurelius Probus (232-282) lifted the ban on planting vines. At that time, Roman legionaries were entitled to three measures of wine per head and day. In 433 AD, the Hun king Attila conquered the province of Pannonia. The turmoil of the migration of peoples had a very negative effect on viticulture and it was not until Emperor Charlemagne (742-814) that a reconstruction was initiated, among other things by introducing nobler Franconian varieties. The right to serve wine from one's own vineyards in the Buschenschenken (Heurigen) was a great stimulus.

The greatest merit can be attributed to the Cistercians, who drained and cleared the swampy and wooded area. In 1216 they were already cultivating 99 vineyards in Heiligenkreuz (Lower Austria). From here they began to plant more vineyards around Lake Neusiedl, around Marienberg Monastery (near Oberpullendorf) and around St. Gotthard. In the 16th century, the vineyard area had reached its greatest expansion and viticulture had become the most important source of income. The Hungarian Queen Maria (1505-1558) granted great privileges to the Burgenland winegrowers. She granted the wine villages of Rust, Jois and Neusiedl am See the right to mark their wine barrels with the initial letters "R", "G" (for Geusz) and "N". The famous Ruster Ausbruch was created at this time and equated with Tokaj.

Burgenland was particularly affected by the many Turkish invasions in the 16th and 17th centuries. Despite all the turmoil of war, epidemics, bad weather and other strokes of fate, the period from the 16th to the 18th century was the absolute golden age of Burgenland viticulture, with predominantly white wines being produced at this time. Large quantities were delivered to the imperial court cellar in Wien and the particularly popular Rust wine was given the honorary title "Vinum imperatorum - imperator vinorum". At that time there were four quality classes in Burgenland: Vinum Nobile (noble wine, dried berries of the Furmint grape variety), Vinum Bonum (quality wine made from the Furmint, Weißer Augster, Blauer Augster and Muskateller varieties), Vinum Mediocre (medium quality) and Vinum Cibale (table wine).

In 1622, Count Nikolaus Esterházy (1583-1645) received from Emperor Ferdinand II. (1578-1637) the dominions of Forchtenstein and Eisenstadt as a fiefdom. This noble family promoted viticulture and wine trade and became the largest landowner in Austria. At the beginning of the 19th century, the Golden Age was over. Due to the Napoleonic Wars and crop failures, large areas of vineyards had to be abandoned and converted into arable land. In the second half of the 19th century phylloxera also struck Burgenland. Paul Vetter from Gols rendered great services in the fight against phylloxera. The area is characterised by a Pannonian-continental climate, the climate-regulating influence of the 230 km² Lake Neusiedl and relatively long growing seasons of up to 250 days. Due to the excellent climatic conditions, Burgenland is ideally suited for viticulture and is considered the red wine region of Austria.

Wine-growing regions of Burgenland

Together with Lower Austria and Wien, Burgenland forms the wine-growing region Weinland, which serves as an indication of origin for country wines. It used to be divided into four wine-growing regions. In 2016, there was an extensive restructuring with also changes in the boundaries of the wine-growing regions. Only two of them are congruent with the former wine-growing areas. The political district of Mattersburg forms the newly created fifth area Rosalia. The two large vineyards Pinkatal and Geschriebenstein have been replaced by Großlage Südburgenland. For the Freistadt Rust there is the new sixth DAC area with the special wine type Ruster Ausbruch. For all quality wines, the generic wine-growing region Burgenland must appear on the label; for DAC wines, the DAC designation must also appear. The wine-growing areas with the vineyards in 2017 (values from 2009 in parentheses):

  • Eisenberg DAC (congruent with former Südburgenland) - 515 ha (499 ha)
  • Leithaberg DAC (formerly Neusiedlersee-Hügelland, changed boundaries) - 3,097 ha (3,576 ha)
  • Mittelburgenland DAC (identical name and boundaries) - 2,104 ha (2,118 ha)
  • Neusiedlersee DAC (same name, changed boundaries) - 6,675 ha (7,649 ha)
  • Rosalia DAC (district of Mattersburg, new) - 297 ha
  • Ruster Ausbruch DAC (from the municipality of Rust, new) - 412 ha

Burgenland - Karte mit Weinbaugebieten

Grape variety list

In 2017, the vineyards covered a total of 13,100 hectares. Compared to 2009 with 13,842 hectares, this was a reduction of just under 6%. The share of white wine varieties is 44.4%, the share of red wine varieties 55.6%. In the lead are the two red wine varieties Blaufränkisch and Zweigelt, which together account for about 40%:

Grape variety - österr
Main name
officially permitted in Austria
Synonyms
Colour Hectare
2017
%-Ant
2017
Hectare
2009
Blaufränkisch - red 2.843 21,7 3.053
Zweigelt Blue Zweigelt, Rotburger red 2.513 19,2 2.649
Grüner Veltliner Weißgipfler white 1.365 10,4 1.473
Welschriesling - white 1.255 9,6 1.422
Chardonnay Morillon - not used in Bgld white 657 5,0 566
White Burgundy Pinot Blanc, Klevner white 510 3,9 551
Merlot - r0t 435 3,3 395
St. Laurent - red 368 2,8 406
Cabernet Sauvignon - red 365 2,8 363
Müller-Thurgau Rivaner white 300 2,3 376
Blue Burgundy Pinot Noir, Pinot Noir, Pinot Noir red 286 2,2 325
Sauvignon Blanc Muscat Sylvaner white 265 2,0 198
Muscat Ottonel - white 262 2,0 264
Bouvier - white 187 1,4 204
Scheurebe Seedling 88 white 157 1,2 191
Neuburg - white 139 1,1 219
White Riesling Riesling, Rhine Riesling white 133 1,0 151
Syrah Shiraz red 114 0,9 113
Blauburger - red 112 0,9 163
Common set white - white 109 0,8 133
Traminer Gewürztraminer, Red T., Yellow T. white 106 0,8 138
Grey Burgundy Pinot Gris, Ruländer white 77 0,6 95
Goldburger - white 48 0,4 80
Roesler - red 128 1,0 71
Muscat Blanc Yellow M., Red M. / Muscat Blanc white 137 1,0 70
Cabernet Franc - red 59 0,5 34
Rathay - red 23 0,2 -
Common set red - red - 0,2 25
Frühroter Veltliner Malvasia white 13 0,1 21
Blue Portugieser - red 11 0,1 19
Furmint - white 11 0,1 8
Jubilee vine - white 3,5 - 9
Sylvaner Green Sylvaner white 2 - 2
Rotgipfler - white 1 - -
Roter Veltliner - white 0,5 - 1
Zierfandler Late red white 0,3 - 1
other. white varieties - white 81 0,6 51
and. red varieties - red 25 0,2 1
WHITE SORT 5.818 44,4 6.227
RED SORT 7.282 55,6 7.615
TOTAL 13.100 100 13.842

Producers

Well-known Burgenland winegrowers' cooperatives and winegrowers' associations are Blaufränkischland, Pannobile, Pannonischer Reigen, Renommierte Weingüter Bur genland (RWB), Weinidylle Südburgenland and Winzerkeller Neckenmarkt. The wineries are listed with the wine-growing regions.

Map: © ÖWM

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