Kellerei In Signo Leonis
A-7311 Neckenmarkt, Austria
Phone +43 2610 42644
Vineyard size: ca. 20 hectares
Heribert Bayer has been operating his estate since the mid-1990s in Neckenmarkt, Central Burgenland and Heribert’s son, Patrick, joined the winery in 2000. Father and son operate their winery as Negociant Eleveurs, meaning they do not own any vineyards and obtain grapes exclusively from suppliers. This type of sourcing is sometimes criticized by winemaking peers but the quality and success of the Bayer's has proved that this approach works - they are consistently among the top winemakers in Austria. Heribert’s previous work as a consultant for other wineries in the 1990s has allowed the Bayers to cultivate and maintain very good relationships with the local vineyards. Through years of cooperation with the Winzerkeller Neckenmarkt, the Bayers have had access to vineyards on Neckenmarkter Hochberg which is home to a very old vine population and thus excellent grapes.
The red wines come exclusively from Neckenmarkter Hochberg, one of Austria's best red wine sites, in the heart of Blaufränkischland. The most important grape variety is clearly Blaufränkisch, which is produced as a pure varietal or used as the dominant partner in blends. The Bayers are individualists, which manifests itself in their unusual and sometimes difficult-to-understand wine names and choice of labels for their bottles. The quirkiness of their naming conventions and label style may explain why the winery seems to fly somewhat under the radar in the Austrian wine scene. Regardless of this fact, every year, Bayer achieves top ratings and produces unstoppable tasting wins. Recently their Signo Sagittarii 2011 was selected by the wine magazine Vinum as the best Blaufränkisch in Austria.
Bayer’s red wine assortment consists of only six wines, but from the cheapest to most expensive in their line, each wine is considered top notch compared to their competitors in the respective price range. In their newly built wine cellar, the Bayers now have enough space to hold back a certain amount of bottles from each vintage. As a long-time partner of Bayer we occasionally come across mature wines that are currently in their ideal enjoyment window.