Enology Training in Austria
Professional Winemaking Training in Austria
Winegrowing in Austria
What is it that makes Austrian wines so special? There are many reasons and the sum of all these factors has paved the path for the sensational quality boom over the past couple of decades. A prime reason is a tradition of winemaking, and grapevines have been cultivated in the same viticultural regions to be found in today's Austria for many thousands of years. Vines are synonymous with the landscape, the culture and daily life. This also applies to the typical Austrian grape varieties, and there are widespread plantings in the regional wine-growing areas. Coupled with ideal geological and climatic elements, the vines enjoy the best conditions essential for making authentic, distinctive wines with character and personality.
The concept behind this success story plays a vital role. The Austrian vintners and producers have all comprehended how important it is to successfully combine traditional viticulture with modern vinification processes. The motto is quality without compromise and the result was success without exception.
Significance is the diversity of Austrian wine culture, from lively, light-bodied examples to monumental, opulent white wines, as well as charming, fruity to full-bodied, red wines with long cellaring potential. Last, but not least, a wide variety of enticing and elegant sweet wines that are certainly amongst the world's best. What wine critics across the globe appreciate the most is that Austrian wines are exceptionally appetizing and pair wonderfully with food, making Austrian wine sheer drinking pleasure.
The winegrowing area in Austria consists of approximately 45.000 ha and is well known for varieties like „Grüner Veltliner“, being the most important. 70% of the winegrowing area is planted with white wines, there are 22 different white quality grape varieties used. The amount of red grape varieties - 13 different varieties are grown in Austria - has been growing in the last years. The average amount of harvest is 2,5 million hectolitres, of which the biggest part is consumed within the country.
Austria is a country with around 18.000 comparably small winegrowers, 6500 with an own label. Most of the wineries are successfully selling their high quality wines directly to the customer. More than half of the winegrowing area is cultivated by winegrowers who cultivate more than 5 ha; those wineries are as well successful in exporting their wines. Get more information at http://www.austrianwine.com
What do we offer?
We offer professional training on quality wineries in Austria, where you experience the whole process of winemaking from viticulture management, harvesting grapes, pressing, fermenting and cellar management in a family environment. As a side effect you will get to know Austrian culture and lifestyle and a bit of German language, but all our hosts speak English.
What do we expect?
We want you to be highly motivated and we expect you to have a good knowledge about winegrowing and winemaking. You should have worked at least at one harvest. Be open minded about Austrian culture and lifestyle and be interested in winemaking in general.
- Viticulture experience and knowledge: bring enology education AND experience from at least one harvest, the more the better
- Age: 18 – 32 years
- Be able to speak good English or good German, for social reasons we would appreciate at least basic German
- Be motivated and interested in winegrowing
- Be flexible and open minded
Screening of applicants
We prefer our partner organisations to screen the applicants by doing a personal interview. Please keep in mind the following criteria:
- Viticulture experience is very important especially because the trainees are coming for harvest time which makes it necessary to be able to work on their own without many explanations.
- Please let us know about the enology education and ask for evidence as well.
- Motivation is one of the most important requirements for a successful training. Please try to find out the real motivation of each trainee.
If you are unable to make a personal interview, please let us know and we see what we can do via Skype.
Start and length of training
2 to 4 month of training starting in August/September until November/December
Wine regions and wineries
We offer placements in different wine regions of Austria. We offer training on high quality wineries who deal with different wines – just let us know your preference.
We offer different placements:
- Wineries with a focus on red wine
- Wineries with a focus on white wine
- Wineries with a focus on sparkling wine (very few)
- Wineries with a focus on sweet wine (very few)
In addition we can look for:
- Conventional wineries
- Organic wineries (few)
- Bio-dynamic wineries (few)
Screening of placements
Most placements are well known high quality wineries. Every winery is screened by us personally. We visit every winery before we send a trainee to the placement. During this site visit we take a look at the working and living conditions and talk to the host to explain our expectations and in the end we agree on the program.
The fee for Landjugend Österreich is 250, - Euro. If the trainee cancels after the placement is found we will charge a cancellation fee of 150,- Euros.
The minimum wage is about € 1.220 Euros (differences are depending on the provinces) each month (40hours/week and 16hours overtime/month), which can be reduced by the costs for room and board (196,20 Euro). Additionally the trainee has to pay for travel health insurance. These numbers are a subject to change every year in June.
Work time and over time
The trainee will work approximately 40 hours a week. The harvest time is a very busy time; this means that you will probably work more than 40 hours. 16 hours per month overtime work is included in your monthly payment. Your host is going to pay you for the overtime or will give you time off if you work more than 16 hours overtime per month.
All trainees get health insurance and work related accident insurance paid by the host winery. Beside this you must have additional accident and liability insurance including repatriation and insurance for your free time and vacations. This must be paid by the trainee.
Visa and work permit
We support you and help you with the application for your work permit and we give you all explanations and assistance.
You will book your flight to Austria (Vienna) and we will help you with the onward travel to your host winery. You will receive your travel schedule from the airport to your host in advance.
Orientation & Excursion
We will run an orientation seminar for incoming trainees in September. This will be combined with an excursion to different wineries to get to know the Austrian Wine Country.
Supervision and support
The trainees will be supervised by us. If the trainee has a problem he/she can call us whenever needed and we will give support.
The trainee will either live with the family in the family house and have his/her own room and share facilities and meals with the family or will live in an extra house or caravan and be responsible for the meals himself. Living conditions will be arranged in advance and will be stated on the Placement Advice which the trainee receives in advance.
For a complete application hand in the following material:
- Application form CV in English or German
- Motivation letter in English or German
- At least one Letter of Reference in English or German
- Certificate of an Oenology education
- Confirmation that you worked at one harvest
- Passport picture
Application deadline for 2016
Please hand in your application 3 months prior to your starting date (latest date: 1st July 2016). If you send us your application earlier you have better chances to be successfully placed!
If you have any questions do not hesitate to contact us:
Landjugend Österreich (Rural Youth Austria)
Young & international
Wiener Straße 64
3100 St. Pölten
Phone: +43 (0)50 259 2 6305
DI Franz Regner