Anita and Hans Nittnaus 'Kalk & Schiefer' Blaufrankisch

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Burgenland, Austria

The Nittnaus family has resided in the town of Gols, on Neusiedlersee’s eastern edge, since 1684. Today, third-generation Hans Nittnaus and his wife Anita helm the winery his grandfather Johann began in 1927. After taking over from his father in 1985, in the aftermath of the well-publicized diethylene glycol scandal which (despite being perpetrated by only a few large wineries) so damaged Austrian wine’s reputation abroad, Hans was resolutely determined to claw out some respect for the wines of his homeland. The Nittnaus estate today encompasses 44 hectares spread among two distinct subregions of northern Burgenland. To the east of Lake Neusiedl, in the Neusiedlersee appellation, soils are of sandy clay with varying levels of flint; this is the site of the family’s historic holdings, as well as the winery itself. More recently, Hans and Anita have acquired vineyards in the Leitha hills, to the west of the lake, whose poorer soils of limestone and slate render Blaufränkisch of striking energy and minerality. They work according to strict biodynamic principles, and are certified as such by the small, rigorous, and less-mainstream “respect-BIODYN” organization.

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