The family vineyard of Erich Polz is situated in an idyllic field in the middle of hilly Southern Styria, about an hour’s drive south of Graz. The business was originally founded in 1912. In the late 1980s, the brothers took over their parents’ vineyard. Christoph Polz, Erich’s son, became the fourth generation to assume the role of winemaker in 2011.
The Polz vineyards are situated in one of the best winegrowing regions of Southern Styria around the Grassnitzberg where the Illyrian climate prevails. The area is characterised by a special harmony of Alpine, Pannonian and Mediterranean climates. As a result, the wine grown here is of the finest quality. The geological composition of the soil, many hours of sunshine and well-distributed rainfall offer almost perfect conditions for viticulture.
The Polz family produce white grape varieties on more than 90% of their 70 hectares, with Sauvignon Blanc being the predominant grape variety. Furthermore, Chardonnay (known as Morillon in this region), Welschriesling, Pinot Blanc and Yellow Muscat thrive here. All grapes are carefully harvested by hand and reflect the great passion and competence of the winery.
The DAC wines present themselves as very aromatic, fruity and clear. They are left to mature in stainless steel and are therefore particularly typical of their variety and vintage. The single vineyard wines such as Hochgrassnitzberg exhibit a unique character and independence and have an ageing potential of up to 15 years. The Hochgrassnitzberg vineyard is generally regarded as one of the best in all of Southern Styria. Most of the vineyards lie on extinct volcanoes. As a result, the Toscana-like landscape is characterised by basalt soils with marl, schist and shell limestone.
When wandering through the beautiful vineyards, you may be startled to hear a loud rattling. That’s the Klapotetz! It’s a small Styrian type of windmill that scares away starlings and other pests. A trip to the region is a must for white wine lovers. Don’t forget to visit one of the cosy Buschenschänke (wine taverns) and try the typical dishes such as beetle bean salad with pumpkin seed oil. The Polz family have their very own wine tavern, where you can sample their delicious wines.
For more information on the Polz Winery and the region, please visit:
Domaine Julien Brocard
The seven vineyards - Chablis "naturally"
Julien Brocard's domaine is located in Préhy, just a few kilometres from the town of Chablis in northern Burgundy. The aim of the domaine is to bring out the true character of the wines without any distortion, and for this purpose the vines have been cultivated biodynamically since 2011.
At a young age, Jack Schlatter travelled from Switzerland to Dallas in the 1950s to work in the cotton trade. He later moved to Mexico and São Paulo (as a coffee tester) and back to Zurich to develop the cotton business in the Eastern bloc. But he always had one foot in Dallas and entered the real estate business there. The wine business also appealed to him early on. But it was a while before he met Bill Harlan, the owner of Merryvale.