Grapes are selected in September when acidity and maturity have reached the perfect point for the base wine of sparkling production. These grapes are sourced from different southeast facing, chalky parcels that lend the wine freshness and warmth. The harvested grapes are transported in small cases directly into the cellar, where they are very gently and carefully pressed.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
The Weingut Bründlmayer is situated in Langenlois, some 70 km north-west of Vienna, upstream along the Danube in the Lower Austrian Kamp Valley. The wooded hills of the Waldviertel protect the vineyards from the cold north-westerly winds. During the day, the sun warms the stony terraces, while at night the fresh, fragrant forest air drifts through the Kamp Valley into the Langenlois Arena. The wines are characterised by a combination of hot days and cool nights, the meeting of the Danube and Kamp valleys, and the geological and climatic diversity of the vineyards.
The winery includes the family dwelling, a cellar equipped with best available technology and a heuriger which is open almost all year round and where all wines can be tasted in a convivial atmosphere. The family members and a committed, enthusiastic workforce devote care and attention to the vinification of the hand-picked grapes.
Climbing north and slightly east of the Kremstal region, Kamptal has very little vineyard area bordering the Danube River (unlike Wachau and Kremstal, whose vineyards run along it). The region takes its name from the river called Kamp, which traverses it north and south. Kamptal’s densely planted vineyards represent eight percent of Austria’s total.
The area experiences wide diurnal temperature variations like the Wachau but with less rain and more frost. Its vast geologic diversity makes it suitable for various experimentations with other varieties besides Grüner Veltliner and Riesling, such as Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc (Weissburgunder), Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, St. Laurent and Zweigelt.
But the region is probably most noted for the beautiful and expansive terraced Heiligenstein, arguably one of the world’s top Riesling sites, as well as some of Austria’s most extraordinary Grüner Veltliner vineyards. Kamptal’s soils, which are mostly loess and sand with some gravel and rocks, make it suitable for Grüner Veltliner, so much so that actually half of the zone is planted to that grape.
A term typically reserved for Champagne and Sparkling Wines, non-vintage or simply “NV” on a label indicates a blend of finished wines from different vintages (years of harvest). To make non-vintage Champagne, typically the current year’s harvest (in other words, the current vintage) forms the base of the blend. Finished wines from previous years, called “vins de reserve” are blended in at approximately 10-50% of the total volume in order to achieve the flavor, complexity, body and acidity for the desired house style. A tiny proportion of Champagnes are made from a single vintage.
There are also some very large production still wines that may not claim one particular vintage. This would be at the discretion of the winemaker’s goals for character of the final wine.