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Today's wine-growing region of Weinviertel in Lower Austria used to be divided into the two independent wine-growing areas of Retz (in the west) and Falkenstein near Poysdorf (in the east), named after their respective main wine-growing locations. Retz vineyards were first mentioned in documents as early as 1155. Around 1200, the famous minnesinger Walther von der Vogelweide (1170-1230) is said to have enjoyed Retz wines in the Zehenthofkeller. Count Berthold von Rabenswalde (1278-1312) had a new town built on the foothills of the Manhartsberg in 1300 and moved his seat to this place; this was the birth of Retz. The town was later given its own protected wine-growing area and developed into the important wine-trading centre of the region. Towards the end of the Thirty Years' War, the Swedes marched into Retz in 1645. The following rhyme tells of the commander's hard drinking: Captain Hensius from Swedenland, well known as the greatest drinker, drank in four and a half months at twenty buckets of wine, which for the day would be two dozen quarts.

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Dr. Christa Hanten

For my many years of work as an editor with a wine and culinary focus, I always like to inform myself about special questions at Wine lexicon. Spontaneous reading and following links often leads to exciting discoveries in the wide world of wine.

Dr. Christa Hanten
Fachjournalistin, Lektorin und Verkosterin, Wien

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