WEINBAU H & R FIDESSER is a Biodynamic winery in Weinviertel region of Austria. They bought the land in 2008.

OWNERS | Rudolf Fidesser (a trained lawyer) and his wife Heidi. Rudolf has four siblings and one of his brother runs their family winery  Weingut Rudolf Fidesser. The other siblings include a dentist, an architect and a teacher (his sister). As well as being a wine-grower Rudolf is also a qualified (business) lawyer.

VINEYARDS | 2018 2 hectares (4.9 acres). Three plots. Granite soils.

TERROIR | The vines are on the rocks of the Bohemian Massif, the oldest mountain range in Austria. The easternmost edge of this basement (Thaya Batholith) consists of a granite with black and white mica (Zweiglimmergranit), whose weathering forms a very barren and permeable primeval soil with little growth potential. The vineyards benefit due to the proximity to the immediately adjacent Waldviertel (warm days, cool nights).

SITES

GRILLENBERG | 3.5 hectares of Gruner Veltliner in Retz, Obernalb. Gently south-sloping. Narrow vineyard on the Mittelberg West slope. West-facing. Evening sun. Soil of weathered ancient rock of the Bohemian Massif. In the northern part the granite is covered by a thin, lime-free layer of rocky brown earth. Then follows the eroded Mittelberg, a coarse, very permeable, lime-free granite colluvium. At the bottom of the Mittelberg, the ground becomes even shallower and barren (granite ranker). The Grillenberg wines are classic rock wines: salty-mineral with a vibrant acidity, delicate and elegant.

GOLITSCH | Golitsch is in Retz/Obernalb. In the summer of 2005, Rudolf identified two abandoned, overgrown former vineyard terraces in the highest point of the Golitsch, a granite giant. He decided to bring back to life this vineyard bordered by dry grassland. The acid soil (granite) is too lean to produce large yields. In autumn 2005 Heidi and Rudolf were able to acquire two small terraces on the Golitsch. The previous owner had cleared the last vines planted nearly 100 years ago in 2003. The yields were unsustainably low due to the high age of the vines and the barren soil. In 2010 Rudolf and Heidi started to recultivate two small terraces on the Golitsch. They planted Riesling using mass selection budwood. Golitsch (“bare mountain”) lies between Retz and Obernalb. Golitsch is a granite mountain (325m). Rocky ground, heath landscape (silicate dry grass areas), rare plants (cowbells, etc.), butterflies and lizards. On the north-east slope of the Golitsch the vineyards extend to the town of Retz, on the southern slope to Obernalb.

RIGOLEN | In many places there is only 20 cm of stony topsoil over impermeable  granite. Rigolen must be replaced by a shallow loosening of the “soil”. The owners planted Riesling here from 2007. Mass selection rather than clones from the Saar and Mosel (ungrafted vines).

SONNLEITEN | Located in Retz/Obernalb. Between the Mittelberg and the Great (Nalber) Haide. One of the top sites in Retz. High slope, south-facing. The soil in the western part of the vineyard derives from the weathering of crystalline material over a subsoil of loam, mixed with stones and granite, and lime-free clay. In the eastern part of the upcoming granite is superimposed by a lime-free Felsbraunerde. In between, a loess of parabraun earth emerges. In this type of soil, clay particles and iron oxides were transferred from the topsoil to the subsoil (C horizon). In the Sonnleiten these lower soil layers are strongly calcareous and mixed with manganese.

CERTIFICATION | 2008 Started using Biodynamic practices. | 2013 First vintage with full organic certification. | 2017 First vintage with full Demeter Biodynamic certification.

WHITE WINES

BERGLAGEN | 2016 A blend. 40% each Riesling and Gruner Veltliner, 15% Pinot Gris, 5% Gewurztraminer. No added sulfites. unfiltered. Creamy, firm yellow fruit, smoky at the Demeter Austria tasting 2018.

OBERNALB BESTE LAGEN | ‘From the best sites in Obernalb’. Gruner Veltliner on granite. 50 year old vines. 16m in 500-litre tonneaux. 100% MLF. Lovely acidity, smoky notes from both the oak and the terroir at the Demeter Austria tasting 2018.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Demeter Austria tasting 2018, Vienna 26th February.

CONTACT

Weinbau H&R Fidesser

Vinzenzplatz 4, A-2070 Retz, Austria

Tel +43676 516 99 53

www.fidesser-retz.at