Sopron, Hungary / Balf, Austria
The Weninger family’s winemaking roots can be traced back to 1828, when the name first appeared in the records of Horitschon, a small town in Burgenland.. Before the existence of a border between Austria and Hungary, Sopron was considered to be the heart of the region, and is thought to be the likely birthplace of the Blaufränkisch or Kékfrankos variety. Here, the cool winds descending from the Sopron mountains are tempered by the warming influence of Lake Neusiedl. In 2006 Franz and his father started converting to biodynamic farming in order to unlock the potential of each site. Franz vilifies a number of different grape varieties with passion and precision, but Kékfrankos remains the focal point of both his Austrian and Hungarian portfolio. His Kékfrankos grapes come from 17-45 year old vines. The fruit is hand harvested, spontaneously fermented in steel tanks, then moved to large barrels for ageing. Only minimal amounts of sulphur are added before bottling and the wine is both unfined and unfiltered. The particular Steiner vineyard (gneiss and mica-schist soil) in Sopron is considered to be one of the finest terroirs in Hungary and it’s history goes back to 1680.