Wirawaxt

WiraWåxt – an old star is reborn

Jost Höpler, our spritely founder launched a new wine labelled WiraWåxt aged 81 in 2019.  The wine is made in the traditional Gemischter Satz style from family owned vines grown on the prestigious Nussberg Hill overlooking the City of Vienna.

 

Jost Höpler laughingly comments:

“This is probably Austria’s youngest start up, one of its oldest wine brands and its most senior winemaker!

Everyone needs a bit of madness and this is mine. I believe in working with nature, by listening to its rythm.  I hope this wine brings you as much joy as it has to me.“

höpler weingarten wien

Background

40 years ago Jost inherited a small vineyard from his mother, located on the famous Nussberg, overlooking the City of Vienna. The site was too small to manage from the winery in Burgenland but in truth, too valuable a spot to lease out for simple ‘heuriger wine’ (table wine).  This troubled him hugely and turning 80 proved the trigger to realise a long-held dream.

 

Jost began by transforming his beloved vineyard.   Armed with an abundant supply of resourcefulness, a car that was absolutely not designed for driving in steep vineyards and a garden lawn mower, Jost cumulatively shovelled tonnes of compost from the local depot into the back of his saloon car, and up onto the steep slopes of the Nussberg.  Each vine received the true care and attention it deserved, some were replaced and weeds were attacked. Everything was watered, pruned and nurtured, all with his own bare hands. There was no team to delegate to and no professional machinery to assist.  Jost was in heaven and gradually the vineyard responded

September 2019 first harvest

The grapes were carefully picked by hand by keen members of the Höpler family; brothers, sisters, cousins and grandchildren –average age a ripe 70!!  Christof Höpler, owner and manager of the Höpler winery, and newly designated Head of Logistics, with the able assistance of Constantine (JH’s 12 year old grandson) transported the freshly picked grapes to the winery, in Burgenland, into the press and drove back to Vienna with the empty boxes before the next load was ready to go. All somewhat unconventional but it worked!

A family effort…

Label design, fermentation and wine making were all done in the Höpler winery in Breitenbrunn. Dorli, Jost’s wife of 51 years, who is famous for the original Höpler labels, designed a fabulous new WiraWåxt logo complete with Vienna’s famous St Stephen’s Cathedral and Ferris wheel in the background, symbolising pictorially exactly what is in the bottle

What does WiraWåxt mean?

WiraWåxt is prounounced is pronounced phonetically ‘Vera Voxt’. It is the colloquial Viennese way of saying ‘wie er wächst’ or ‘just as it grows’.
This wine is a traditional ‘Wiener Gemischter Satz’ (a field blend) made of Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Blanc and Welschriesling. These different white grape varietals all grow mixed up together in the rows of vines and are harvested and fermented all at the same time and in the same tank.
Three grape varietals that grow “just as they please”– hence the connection to the phrase WiraWåxt! This is uniquely Viennese and the Nussberg, a south facing hill on the most northern edge of the City of Vienna sloping down to the Danube River, is one of the most iconic and prestigious vineyard locations in Vienna.

 

Taste and Price

Jost comments; “I have drawn on my decades of experience to make the best wine nature would allow me. I am delighted with the quality of my WiraWåxt vintages. 2022 will be our 4th vintage!

The price was set to ensure everyone could afford to drink this little bit of Vienna and to enjoy this with me. It is a small vineyard, when it’s gone it is gone. I will be here next year to make another!”

Colour: Light straw yellow
Nose: light fresh rose petals
Palate: Hints of fresh herbs, a touch of spice and fullness in the middle of the palate with a long finish.
Food Pairing – It’s got to be a Schnitzel but in truth Asian food would go just as well.

Jost Höpler comments, “It is an absolute delight for me to have turned this somewhat uncut diamond into such a dazzler with nothing but my bare hands and a lot of hard work. This project has brought happiness and madness into our lives. It shows one is never too ‘young’ to start something new and my decades of experience are still relevant. I am proud to have been true to the traditional production methods of Wiener Gemischter Satz. Working with what one has and letting nature produce the best blend that it will allow me.’

Further photos and PR releases are here. Media

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