Austria | Burgenland

Ried Plachen, Rust, Leithaberg, Burgenland

Burgenland, the easternmost of Austria’s federal states, is influenced by the hot, continental Pannonian climate and produces the most opulent and authoritative red wines in Austria, along with complex whites and extraordinarily fine sweet wines.

All the way in the south, the Eisenberg, with its unique soils and light influence of the Styrian climate, offers the best possible conditions for Blaufränkisch grapes, which produce red wines with the finest minerality and incomparable elegance. The Ruster Ausbruch is also one of the most famous sweet wines – in the world and an integral part of the regional viticultural identity. The heavy loam soils of Mittelburgenland and the Rosalia region impart a particular depth of fruit and length on the palate to Blaufränkisch wines, while in the hilly areas west of Lake Neusiedl, this is sometimes enhanced with distinct mineral notes and perceptible tannins.

With its limestone and slate soils, the eastern slope of the Leitha Range provides a unique terroir for complex white wines, including Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay and Grüner Veltliner, as well as for reds produced from Blaufränkisch.

To the east of Lake Neusiedl, Blauer Zweigelt prevails, producing powerful, juicy reds, although Blaufränkisch and St Laurent also manage to yield outstanding results. The Seewinkel region to the south, with its special microclimate, belongs to one of the world’s few true bastions of sweet wine. Here, the high humidity (resulting from the presence of numerous small lakes, or “Zicklacken”) encourages the onset of Botrytis cinerea (noble rot). This enables the regular production of premium Beerenauslese and Trockenbeerenauslese wines here. 

One of the most remarkable aspects of the wine industry in Burgenland has been the pioneering approach of the winegrowers, which has also enabled wines produced from international varieties, as well as powerful red cuvée blends, to achieve the highest level of recognition in recent years.