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Farming : Certified Organic | Dry-Farmed
Winemaking : Hand-Picked Grapes | Native Yeast Fermentation | Unfined | Vegan
Region : Burgenland, Austria
Grape : Blaufrankisch
Alcohol by Volume : 13.5%
Woman Winemaker: Birgit and Katrin Pfneisl
The young and charming sisters Birgit and Katrin Pfneisl, partners in Pfneiszl Winery are responsible for the equally charming Kékfrankos (AKA Blaufränkisch). Birgit is responsible for the vineyards and winemaking, Katrin marketing and sales. Born and raised in Austria, their grandparents fled their vineyards in Sopron to escape Communism and settled just across the border in Kleinmutschen, Burgenland, where the “z” was dropped from their surname.
In 93’ the Pfneisl family re-acquired their Hungarian vineyards. Having since established Weingut Pfneisl, one of Austria’s premier red wine estates, Birgit and Katrin’s father Franz Pfneisl and his brothers, decided to give these ancestral vineyards to the sisters. After completing her University studies, Birgit set out to work far away from home. She made wine in Italy, Australia, New Zealand, South America and the US before returning home with dreams of an organic estate. Starting with the inaugural 04’ vintage, the Pfneiszl vineyards were farmed organically, in 09’ they were certified Organic. In addition to the fine Kékfrankos, Birgit makes the delightful frizzante Sparkelina, a stylish Merlot, and a range of thoughtful cuvees.
A little like Gamay, a little like Cab Franc, Blaufränkisch is a site expressive noble sort capable of profundity and fun. Birgit and Katrin Pfneisl are both. Rather than make wine with their father and uncles who run the well established family estate in Austria, the sisters decided to farm their ancestral vines in Sopron, Hungary, where Blaufränkisch is Kékfrankos and Pfneisl is Pfneiszl. Organic farming, old vines and wild fermentation, their wines contrasted sharply with those of their elders: lighter, prettier, less structured and more aromatic. Their Kékfrankos has always been more Blaufränkisch than most Blaufränkisch so we were happy to discover Birgit and Katrin's increasing involvement in the Austrian estate and immediately taken with the results. Blaufränker is that wine: a collaborative wine project born from the common goal of deepening our relationships with each other and this loveable grape.