Due to its favourable geographical position and the climatic
conditions that share some features of Pannonian climate and are ideally
suited to winegrowing, the name Perchtoldsdorf has for many centuries
been almost synonymous with the tending of vines.
It is hard to say when viticulture was first introduced in the area.
The farmers who, around 1000 AD, settled on the eastern outskirts of the
Vienna Woods under the protection of a chain of fortified castles,
probably concentrated on field crops and animal husbandry. Although the
first written winegrowing records date back to 1248, it cannot be
excluded that vines were already planted there in the 11th and 12th
centuries. Only gradually were more and more fields converted into
vineyards. The incentive for the conversion was mainly the higher yield
produced by vineyards, the possibility to manage smaller surfaces
profitably and the favourable types of land leasing that were developed
in viticulture. As a result, almost the entire arable land was planted
with vines in the 16th century. At the time, huge profits
could be made from exporting large quantities of wine to Bavaria, Upper
Austria and Salzburg.
At the end of the 16th century, heavy duties were imposed
on this export trade. With the resulting drop in sales, viticulture
suffered a decline. Another event that had fatal consequences for the
wine industry in Perchtoldsdorf was the Turkish siege of Vienna from
July to September 1683. It took a long time until the region recovered
from the terrible loss in population. Many of the immigrants settling
down in Perchtoldsdorf came from Alpine regions and knew nothing about
winegrowing. The first vineyards to be converted into fields and pasture
land were the less favourable humid areas in the east of the
municipality. Around and after 1700, the export trade ceased completely
and wine was predominantly bought by innkeepers and private individuals
from the area. Selling the wine by the glass in Perchtoldsdorf itself
was still a popular trade. The producers sold the wine that was one or
two years old and used what was older for their own needs since it
quickly deteriorated in quality.
The vine fretter blight of 1887 brought the severest crisis in
history for the wine producers. Many despondent vintners who could not
afford the costly and time-consuming change to blight-resistant American
vines had to abandon their vineyards that were then sold, often at
ridiculously low prices, divided into lots and then built up. From 1880
until 1912, the wine-growing surface declined by 38%, from 248 ha to 154
Extensive construction activities before and after the two World Wars
further diminished vineyard areas in Perchtoldsdorf, leaving only about
14% of the entire municipal territory for the production of wine.
Today, the Buschenschank (Heuriger),
a rustic type of wine tavern run by the vintner himself, is the most
common outlet where wine from Perchtoldsdorf is sold. About 90% of the
quantities produced are sold at such places.
The area around Perchtoldsdorf on the outskirts of the thermal
region is ideally suited to producing high-quality wines derived from
Welschriesling, Weißburgunder (pinot blanc), Neuburger, Grüner
Veltliner, Blauer Portugieser and Zweigelt grapes.