The latter part of day two led us to Weingut Pöckl in Mönchhof in the Neusidl am See to visit with the newest member of the Pöckl winemaking team, René.
The estate was founded in 1910 by Albert Pöckl who, at one time, lived in Minnesota, MN, actually, but it wasn’t until 1945 when his son, Thoedor Pöckl took over the farm that they began to focus on grape growing. The estate, then ten hectares which has since grown to 32 during which time transfer of winemaking duties moved onward to Josef Pöckl in 1972.
Today the estate focuses on the indigenous varieties such as Zweigelt, St. Laurent, and Blaufrankisch as well as international ones such as Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon. Use of barrique is something that started here in the late 1980’s. The wines are classified as ,” intense fruit, elegance and distinct tannins,” by the Pöckl family as well as a distinct finger print by current winemaker, René.
The area of Mönchhof is known for its sunny, warm climate and rich soils. There is a mixture of loam, clay, sand, and “black earth” in the soils and the vineyards Kaiserberg, Rappühl, Pohnbühl, Langberg, Wiesacker and Herrenjoch are the specialty areas for the winery.
Rene brought us on a tour of the winery – first through the tall grasses of the mock vineyards next to his winery where they showcase what it’s like to do work there. They believe in letting nature take hold of the fruit, while still exemplifying what they can do in the wineries.
A tour of the winery revealed some of their practices. There is still a good use of oak barriques in the winery and Rene’s goal is, ultimately, to impart his own fingerprint on the wines so much so that it will one day be recognized internationally. The “terroir of Pöckl,” as he called it.
The winery has developed over the years, but hasn’t lost sight of its roots. As time moves forward, the Pöckly wines, new and old, continue to develop and we will see what treasures they turn in to in the coming years.