Leithaberg DAC

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

Leithaberg DAC, official Austrian dac appellation named for the predominantly limestone and schist Leitha Hills (the Leithagebirge) that, prior to the creation of burgenland, formed the Austro-Hungarian border, and extend to the western and northern fringes of the neusiedlersee. The Leithaberg DAC applies to wines grown in much, but not all, of the neusiedlersee-hügelland growing region (the commune of rust and its immediate environs representing the most important exception) provided these meet the following criteria. Reds must be at least 85% blaufränkisch—a grape variety that represents somewhat more than a quarter of this region’s vineyard surface area—together with any combination of Pinot Noir, st-laurent, and/or zweigelt. They must be oak-aged and cannot be sold before 1 September of the second year following harvest. Whites may be made from any combination of Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay, Grüner Veltliner, and/or neuburger. All wines must be at least 12.5% alcohol. Since its inception for vintage 2008 (2009 for whites), wines that do not attain Leithaberg DAC status must be labelled Burgenland for their state of origin—although this was already common practice, since the term Neusiedlersee-Hügelland never really caught on for labelling purposes. With the advent of a Leithaberg DAC, reference to the Leitha Hills in names and on labels has been outlawed for all but Leithaberg DAC wines.