Martin Pasler’s 12 hectare, family estate is located in the commune of Jois, on the northern shore of Lake Neusiedl, in Austria’s Burgenland wine region, at the start of the Leitha Hills. This is one of the oldest wine-growing regions in Central Europe, originally cultivated by the Celts over 2,500 years ago. The region has an exceptional micro-climate which combines the temperature regulating effect of Lake Neusiedl, the warmth coming from the Pannonian plain to the east, and the protective forests at the top the hills. The Pasler estate dates back to the 17th century.
Martin took over from his father in 1994 after training at wineries in Germany, France and Australia. He farms organically and prunes intensively to ensure that yields are kept low. His goal is to take advantage of his outstanding vineyards sites in Jois (Kirchberg, Henneberg, Obersatz and Buschenberg) which slope down to the Lake. The soils of the Leithaberg, which has its origins as an ancient seabed, are a mix of limestone, slate and clay. Some of the vine parcels are over 70 years old. An important feature of the Jois microclimate is the long growing season: this not only gives dry wines of exceptional complexity and depth, but also makes the production of sweet wines possible, as the moisture coming from the Lake gives rise to botrytis in late October and November. Martin Pasler’s range is a unique mix of dry whites (Pinot Blanc, Welschriesling) and reds (Blaufränkisch and Zweigelt) and well as late harvest wines made from heirloom, native varietals such as Neuburger, Goldburger, Muscat-Ottonel and Welschriesling. “Tradition needs life,” Martin says, describing his commitment to producing compelling, world-class wines in his native Jois.
Pasler ferments his wines slowly on their indigenous yeasts and does not allow them to pass through malolactic. The wines age on their lees for 5 months before bottling.