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Falstaff Winemaker of the Year 2024: Domäne Wachau

Falstaff Winemaker of the Year 2024: Domäne Wachau

Domäne Wachau was named “Winemaker of the Year 2024” by renowned German-speaking wine magazine Falstaff. The award recognizes the almost twenty years of work of Winery Director and Master of Wine Roman Horvath and Winemaker Heinz Frischengruber, who with great passion and determination have turned their idea of a “next-generation wine cooperative” into reality.

Their successful collaboration with the vignerons in the Wachau has resulted in an impressive range of precise, terroir-driven wines. At the same time, Horvath & Frischengruber have also established Domäne Wachau as a pioneer in the region and beyond the national borders. “It was crucial from the start to respect this unique terroir and the bold desire to become one of the best producers in the region,” says a thankful Heinz Frischengruber, adding: “Over the years, we simply implemented our visions and principles bit by bit.”

These include not only the artisanal, sustainable, and increasingly organic cultivation of the vineyards, but also the ambition to express the unique characteristics of each single vineyard. Wachau’s vignerons play an important role in this. Throughout the Wachau, they cultivate their small parcels, often with intense manual labor and in accordance with strict quality criteria. “The heroes of our estate”, as Frischengruber calls them, work on small-structured steep terraces of less than two hectares (five acres) on average, primarily by hand, and stand for the success of Domäne Wachau in recent years.

Roman Horvath MW was also full of gratitude. “The fact that we were awarded “Winemaker of the Year” as a cooperative is of course spectacular and only possible as a strong team. I think we have now developed a style that is unmistakable and combines a distinctive puristic style, with both depth and freshness which can be found in our single vineyard wines.”

Information provided by Domäne Wachau