The Carnuntum wine region stretches to the southeast of Vienna and is named after the Roman settlement of the same name that visitors can explore at Carnuntum Archeology Park. Powerful and mature reds are the vinophile business cards of this wine region.
With 910 ha of vineyards between Vienna and Bratislava, Carnuntum is considered an up-and-coming wine region in Austria. That is because of a new generation of top young winemakers and a variety of excursion destinations. Archeologists keep unearthing valuable finds from Ancient Romans, who were growing wine in these heavy soils of clay, loess, sand and gravel even back then.
Today these soil conditions and the Pannonian climate are naturally most suitable for red varieties. Leading the way are the two top reds Blauer Zweigelt and Blaufränkisch, followed by international newcomers like Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. But whites such as Grüner Veltliner, varieties of Burgunder and traditional cuvees (called “Gemischter Satz” in eastern Austria) are also characterized by a full-body and structure. There is one thing wine lovers should definitely keep in mind: Committed winemakers mark their wines designated Rubin Carnuntum with the symbol of the Heathen’s Gate (Heidentor), a readily visible seal of quality for traits typical of the region. Of course you don’t have to stop with admiring the Heathen’s Gate as a miniature on bottles of great wine; you can also see it first-hand in its natural size – in Petronell.
However, wine mavens focus on the Arbesthal hill country and the wine villages of Göttlesbrunn, Höflein and Arbesthal. They also turn their sights to the east of the region where Spitzerberg, a striking hill, serves as the center for winegrowing. Winemakers from around Göttlesbrunn have developed a distinct style of reds with exceptional power, fullness and density. They go down with soft smoothness, making them pleasurable to drink even as young wines.