The name Oggau probably sounds familiar to many of you, and if this small village on the shores of Lake Neusiedl in Austria can boast such popularity, it is thanks to Eduard Tscheppe and Stephanie Tscheppe-Eselböck, the couple behind Gut Oggau, one of the most popular and forward-thinking estates in the region...
|Blaufränkisch, Zweigelt, Grünerveltliner...
|Organic agriculture, Demeter
Stephanie Tscheppe-Eselböck comes from the shores of Lake Neusiedl, her father, the chef Walter Eselböck, being one of the most renowned chefs of his generation, crowned with two stars in the famous Michelin guide. She studied at the Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne, but it was her sister, Barbara, who took over the running of the Taubenkobel pension, south of the lake.
Eduard Tscheppe comes from a family of winegrowers in southern Austria, in the middle of the Styrian hills. The name is easily associated with his distant cousins, Ewald Tscheppe of the Werlitsch estate or his brother Andreas Tscheppe and his labels with the dragonfly.
It is therefore quite natural that the two young people gravitate towards the world of wine and gastronomy, and met in 2005 at a winegrowers' fair in Vienna. It was love at first sight over a first bottle! Both wine lovers, they decided to launch themselves in that universe, one way or another. They settled in Oggau, on the shores of Lake Neusiedl, in 2007, taking over an old estate.
Dedicated to organic and biodynamic farming from the start, they gradually shaped their estate and their dream, expanding, planting vines, opening their own "Heuriger", a sort of typical Austrian winegrower's restaurant, and developing their wines, with such familiar faces and names borrowed from imaginary characters, Winifred, Theodora, Atanasius... wines with identity, pure, touching and so personal.
The story goes that during the maturation of their first vintage in 2007, Stephanie and Eduard got into the game of discussing the wines as they tasted them in the cellar, as if they were people.
Would they be young, old, austere or lively, serious or rather casual? They played the game and spent a whole night imagining each wine in its human guise, until the early hours of the morning. Stephanie and Eduard then decided to contact a friend of theirs, a designer, to bring their nightly discussions to life. Faces, names, a family tree, the Gut Oggau vintages were born, and the labels with them.
So, no, they are not members of an existing family, nor vague cousins of our two winemakers... another myth to kill, the faces neither evolve nor age from vintage to vintage, unchanged since 2007.
A notable exception, in 2016, a vintage hit by frost and hail, all the estate's wines were brought together in three cuvées, a white, a rosé and a red, the labels then mixing the different faces of the usual wines. Their name? Family Reunion.