Epicure Magazine
Where Theres A Sil Theres A Way Image Credit: Epicure Magazine
Where Theres A Sil Theres A Way Image Credit: Epicure Magazine

Where There's A Sil, There's A Way

The formidable Silvia Heinrich has faced down every hurdle, but can she take second-generation Austrian winery J. Heinrich to the next level?

June Lee

I take the train 100km from Vienna to the well-manicured town of Deutschkreutz, population 3,000, where Silvia Heinrich has personally come to pick me up. With a wide smile and sunkissed countenance, she bounds up in her Converse All-Stars to the obvious only Asian at the station. Winemaker, field hand, single mother, daughter, designer, marketer, adminstrator – name it and she does it all, with barely six hours sleep a day. It's a privilege to spend the next 24 hours staying at J.Heinrich, before a hectic weekend begins at wine show VieVinum 2018.

“A feeling from the heart”

In the cosy winery grounds, I meet Silvia's parents, Gerte andJohanne Heinrich, from where the wine got its name. Silvia is considering a name change to just Heinrich, although many already confuse them for larger Burgenland winery (Gernot) Heinrich. Maybe she should also consider S.Heinrich, seeing how she has completely transformed the business once she fully took over in 2010.

Her dream to make wine nearly didn't come to fruition as her parents initially told her that it was too difficult a job for women. It was her brother Hannes  who got to attend winemaking school, although he had wanted to be a chef. (Today he's happier as a policeman and a farmer.)

The winery officially started in 1993, when Silvia was 19 and had finished school, so she eventually

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