Michael and Erich Andert are brothers making waves with Zweigelt and skin macerated white wines in their small corner of southern Burgenland. They are obsessive biodynamic farmers tending to a huge range of crops and animals on their 4.5 hectare farm. Michael learned biodynamics during his 19 years working for Sepp Moser, a well-known biodynamic farm not far away. Erich has a sommelier and sales background, working for some of the best restaurants, wine shops and importers in Austria over the years. They make an excellent team in the cellar where they combine expertise.
Vines have been in their family for longer than anyone can remember but the brothers didn’t make wine until the 90s, with their first commercial vintage in 1998. Now they practice natural winemaking, with all forms of modern equipment and chemicals completely absent from their cellar and vineyards.
The Andert vines are lucky. They see absolutely no sulfur or copper and haven’t for years (this is extremely rare). In fact, the only sprays they use on the vines are biodynamic preparations. Soils are black sand, loam with limestone pockets throughout. Between the rows are many different vegetables for eating but each has a purpose. Everything is planted with the ecosystem of the vineyard in mind.
The farmhouse beside their vineyard is home to many different animals including chickens, geese, sheep, goats and others who all do their part in fertilizing. Their gardens are extensive, and the brothers are avid hunters, smokers and cooks. On our last visit we tasted a range of the cured and smoked meats with their own mustards, pickles and bread. They live life in the old style, producing almost everything they eat.
Grapes are harvested by hand and brought to the winery for natural fermentation without temperature control. All of the wines are made with skin maceration – both white and red fruit. Sulfur is used only at bottling. The wines are of course unfined, unfiltered and bottled according to the lunar cycle.
Andert Wein G’Mischter Sotz
A field blend of all their white varieties including Welshriesling, Rülander (Pinot Gris), Grüner Veltliner and Chardonnay. Whole cluster skin maceration for 4 days before pressing into barrel for natural fermentation without temperature control. Aromatic and bright with fine tannins, tension and herbal, tropical notes.
Andert Wein Zweigelt Rose
Mostly Zweigelt with a touch of Cabernet and Saint Laurent. Short maceration and pressed into barrel for natural fermentation without temperature control. Plush and juicy with explosive fruit.
Andert Wein Blauer Zweigelt
One of the most drinkable red wines we have come across. Low alcohol, whole cluster Zweigelt. Bright juicy fruit, herbal and completely smashable. Serious, but without pretense. Blauer means blue in German and refers to the biotype of Zweigelt.