Weingut Kiss

There are three Weingut Kiss in the same town, which means we got lost on our first visit. But this visit turned into one of the best days of my 2016 and my visit in 2018 too, so it was worth the initial confusion!
 
Verena and Rudy Kiss are the 6th generation of the Kiss (Pronounced GIISCH)  family to work the vines BUT first generation to work their full-time.

Rudolf’s relatives started the winery in 1837,in a wine cellar of just 20 square meters. It still exists today but it’s no surprise to hear that it’s no longer in use!

Rudy used to work for the Austrian government’s tax department. A job that came in surprisingly handy when he was looking for ways to plant some of the mountain slopes that were unsuited to viticulture due to masses of large outcrops of rocks. He knew there were tax breaks and subsidies to get the Austrian army into to clear the site which has now been reclaimed as a vineyard after removing thousands of tons of stone!

They cultivate 10 hectares on the Leitha mountain, 301m tall with a lot of special soil types. Their philosophy is making wines that are low intervention while being close to nature. So they practice organic methods but are not organic certified. Their vineyards are influenced by Lake Neusiedl and the Pannonian climate.

In 2006 the couple changed to a new location with a bigger cellar and very near to their vineyards. Instead of growth they put focus on preservation and increasing quality!

All of their red wines are from old vines which are worked 100% by hand.

Concentration of flavour is the focus in the vineyard with spring pruning and green harvesting aiming to lower yields. They harvest at the end of September, depending on the weather.

Verena says that St Laurent is a bit of a Diva grape! Very high maintenance and with varying harvest yields; In 2012 only 4,000kg harvested, translating into 1,400 bottles in the cellar, which makes this wine even more remarkable!

The end result at Weingut Kiss is fantastic wines made by the loveliest people - what could be better? As Prince said " I just want your extra time and your ... KISS!"

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