Here is the short version. Some million years ago, the area around Jois looked like the Caribbean looks today. The primary rock of the Leithagebirge protruded in some places as small islands above the primordial ocean. All kind of seaweed, corals and other sea animals inhabited the mountain under water. As the sea slowly disappeared the living forms fossilzed into limestone – the “Leithakalk”. Today this limestone gives our wines their minerality and saltiness. So above a certain sea level, the hilly range shows its primary rock – we call it slate – the slopes below show limestone and the foothills consist of chalky loamy.
For example at “Gritschenberg” the soil is dominated by limestone of the Leithagebrige. There are only very few places in Jois where it comes so purely to the surface. This limestone adds good structure, a long lasting finish and important chalky aspects to our wines – the salt in the soup.
Locals called it “Tannenberg (Fir-Tree Hill)” since distant times, even as only Scotch Pines grew on it. It is situated a little out of the village, nearest to Lake Neusiedl. Once, in prehistoric times, it might have been an island. Its southern slope is called “Jungenberg”, the northern slope “Hackelsberg”. At both locations the soil ist dominated by slate.
Why do we tell you all these facts? Because you can taste the difference! It might be analytic not provable – but wine grown on slate does taste different to wine grown on limestone.