Though Vienna is known for patisseries, opera, music and glistening pedestrian shopping plazas, the city also maintains a viticultural focus. The Wieninger winery was founded as part of that traditional Viennese heurigen (winebar) system established in the 18th century. Born in 1966 to this wine growing family, Fritz Wieninger represents the fourth generation in the current house. Before his birth it was his mother that was the family winemaker, as she was one of the first female graduates of the Oenology program at Klosterneuberg (Europe’s oldest wine making school). Emerging from his own training in the wake of the Austrian Wine Scandal of 1985, Fritz spent a year working vineyards in California. It was during this time that he was convinced that the future for Austria lay in making wines of great quality and distinction, and it was also his inspiration for making top quality wines at his own home from the classic Burgundian varieties Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
Once returned from his travels, Fritz took firm control of the family winery and the arc of success was swift and steep over the next few years – his first exports in 1989, Falstaff’s “Winzer der Jahr” (Winemaker of the Year) in 1990, and first exports to the USA in 1995.