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Johannes Hirsch. Kamptal Vintner with Vision and Perseverance 721 rolls of a wild boar is evidently the distance between the glassed tasting room to the prime vineyard sites Lamm, Gaisberg and Heiligenstein. The view from the Johannes Hirsch Winery in Lower Austria’s Kamp Valley sweeps over stunning vineyard slopes and pauses at the almond tree. If you were naïve enough to believe that being a vintner is always this romantic, you would immediately want to change your profession. Johannes Hirsch has truly achieved something here than many only dream: a harmonious symbiosis of steadfast tradition and modern esprit as lifestyle. This is a winery with roots from the 16th century that today represents the utmost quality in wine, innovation, and global thinking. It is no question that quite a portion of courage and perseverance was necessary to come so far. Terry Theise, the American wine prophet and importer of top Austrian wines, describes Johannes Hirsch, his “Vintner of the Year 2009”, as fearless. Fearless because Johannes Hirsch follows no conventions in his quest for quality, makes no compromises, and is prepared to swim against the current. Fearless because he does not intervene and allows nature to take its course in the vineyard. Fearless because he also allows the evolvement of what has grown in the vineyard to occur unadulterated in the wine cellar. The result is vibrant wine, with either firm and mineral or creamy structure depending upon the aspect and soil of its vineyard of origin. These are wines that excel with clarity and remain appetizing glass for glass; the wines of Johannes Hirsch are seldom over 12.5% ABV. Since the end of the 1990’s, Riesling and Grüner Veltliner of exquisite clarity and lightness have become his signature. The top wines carry the names of their vineyard of origin: Lamm, Gaisberg and Heiligenstein. “Trinkvergnügen” has also enjoyed world-wide success. For a wine of such finesse and minerality to be categorized as an “entry level” wine is quite ironic. All of Johannes Hirsch’s vineyards are cultivated biodynamically, but this is a logical consequence for him and not something that he blows his horn about. The quality of his wines speaks for itself since the conversion to very old traditional cultivation methods. Despite his relative youth, Johannes Hirsch exudes a certain calm poise. He manages the winery together with his father and his wife Sandra, who studied marketing. He manages to find plenty of time for his young children, Marie and the twins Florian and Josef. He exerts the same calm patience with his children as he does with his vines, allowing them to become who they were meant to be. – Description from milana

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