Graz, August 2020
With an increase in the number of entries by exactly 32% compared to the previous year, the success story of the Austrian wine competition for PIWI varieties continues! Chairman Wolfgang Renner is convinced: "PIWIS can no longer be stopped"!
For the second time the association “PIWI Austria” organized the wine competition “New / innovative grape varieties” for Austrian wines made from fungus-resistant grape varieties. This year there were already an astonishing 146 wines from 64 different companies. As in the previous year, most of the wines came from Styria, which traditionally and climate-related has a larger PIWI area than the other wine-growing federal states. This time, however, the participants from the federal state of Lower Austria made a strong performance. More than a third of all wines submitted came from there and six out of ten categories were won!
The venue for the jury tasting was again the Haidegg experimental station in Graz. With the modern sensor room and the generously designed event area, it was possible to carry out the tasting at a sufficient distance in times of the Covid 19 crisis. The excellent cuisine in the house completed the pleasant atmosphere on the outskirts of Graz. The jury made up of recognized experts judged according to the international 20-point system. All wines submitted were rated, and gold or silver plaques will soon be issued for them, depending on the number of points. For the evaluation of a separate category at least 10 submitted wines were required.
Jury (from left to right): Janez Valdhuber (Uni Marburg), Helmut Hirzer (Silberberg Wine Laboratory), Wolfgang Renner (PIWI Austria, Food Management), Leonhard Steinbauer (Haidegg Research Station), Martin Palz (Styria District), Annemarie Foidl (Sommelier Union Austria), Erich Leitner ( TU Graz), Christian Eitler (LK Lower Austria), Robert Steidl (Steidl-Weinberatung), Georg Thünauer (Weingut Thünauer), Helmut Gangl (BA for Viticulture Eisenstadt), Stanko Vrsic (Uni Marburg), Michael Gangl (Kobatlhof, Tieschen), Christoph Gabler (Weinbauschule Krems), Christian Waltl (W2 - Weinbau Waltl, Klagenfurt)
"PIWI “stands for fungus-resistant grape varieties. These grape varieties are new and extremely innovative. They come from extensive cross-breeding, they have nothing to do with transgenic or cisgenic changes! They are more or less resistant to the two most important fungal diseases in viticulture: Downy mildew (downy mildew) and Oidium (powdery mildew). The modern generation of PIWI varieties is not only easy to care for in the vineyard, it also has the potential for excellent wine quality! PIWIS fit exactly with the idea of the "Green Deal". You will not be able to avoid PIWIS in the future if you want to operate ecologically and economically sustainable viticulture successfully in the long term!
The association "PIWI Austria" was founded in 2005 as a working group for the promotion of fungus-resistant grape varieties and is networked with PIWI International eV. Functions of the association include the transfer of knowledge or the exchange of knowledge, organization of inspections and specialist excursions, regular meetings and the exchange of experiences and public relations. There are now around 100 members.
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