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One of the first winegrowers was Anton Iby, born in 1884 – Anton I, as it were. His son, Anton II, born in 1909, married into the Petschowitsch farmhouse and, together with his wife, Maria Petschowitsch, had two sons, Anton III (1931) and Paul (1933). The IBY red wine vineyard still stands on the Petschowitsch family`s farm property. Anton Iby II died at the age of 36 in the Second World War in 1944.
Anton III gradually expanded the acreage to 5.5 hectares into the 1970s. In the 1960s, he startet bottling and marketing his red wine on a small scale. He had four children with his wife Maria. Two sons and two daughters. Today`s “senior” – Anton IV (born in 1955) – vinified red wine for the first time in 1983 together with his wife Johanna over an area of 1.25 ha.
Iby Anton V presented his first work in 2000: a Blaufränkisch-dominant Cuvée named Quintus. As a Blaufränkisch pioneer, Anton V developed a premium-class Blaufränkisch – Blaufränkisch Juwel. The almost 60-year-old location of Dürrau, characterised by its deep soil, is uniquely suited for this. This is the second time, in 2000, that Blaufränkisch Dürrau had been selectively bottled since 1993. That was the hour of birth for the international image of this unrecognised grape variety.
1774 hectares of Blaufränkisch in central Burgenland (as of 2009) provide the largest area of Blaufränkisch of any wine-growing region. A statement by Anton Iby from Horitschon may be indicative of the change in mentality of the time: “Towards the end of the 1990s, I came to the conclusion that varietal Blaufränkisch would be even better than the Cabernet Sauvignon that was so popular at the time, provided that we make as much effort with our native variety as we do with Cabernet.” Following through on this reasoning, Iby dispensed with all the Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir and Syrah vines on his land in 2004 and planted Blaufränkisch vines in their place.
Due to his decades of experience, Anton IBY IV is considered the “doyen and lobbyist” of the Burgenland red wine growers. In his role as chairman of the VBM – Verband Blaufränkisch Mittelburgenland (Central Burgenland Blaufränkisch Association) – he introduced the first DAC to central Burgenland in 2005, with the DAC Mittelburgenland.
His wife Hanni, however, tends more to work in the background, because her life is focused on the vineyards. She dedicates her extraordinary knowledge and commitment to the most important foundation of a vineyard, namely the vine.
Sales have grown steadily, as has the vineyard area – it now amounts to 30 hectares, and the main buyer of the multi-award-winning IBY wines is the gastronomy industry at home and abroad. The family itself is also growing:
In 2003, Anton V got to know his Eva. Her talent for communication is utilised in the company for organisation and marketing. The two are now married and proud parents of four children. Eva is devoted with heart and soul to being the mother of her two girls and two boys. When there is still time, she handles sales.
In 2017, Anton V (Quintus) and Eva Maria take over the business from their parents.
This leads to the line of wines becoming even clearer and more concise, because the two of them concentrate on developing their own style, which dispenses with all kinds of wine enhancements, instead reflecting, without distortion, the characteristics of the grape variety, the soil, and the climate.
This makes a return to the large wooden barrel unavoidable. The result is red wines that are fruity, smooth, elegant and extremely rich in finesse, which are met with delight from the start.
In keeping with this wine style, a new label design is developed, including a redesign of the logo. The old-fashioned “IBY stripe” had to be dispensed with. In 2018, the new IBY design is presented to the public during the red wine harvest.
The font and the house are kept. The background is white, so that the 3 letters are clearly recognisable. Horitschon and Burgenland form the foundation. The oak leaf in the middle stands for Horitschon! Because, according to old tradition, Horitschon means the people of the oak forest. There used to be oaks where Blaufränkisch grows today.
In order to process and vinify the grapes even more gently, a new press house with a modern grape transfer system and a barrel ripening room with two temperature zones is built. The young wine needs higher temperatures for acid reduction, whereas the more mature wine feels more comfortable in cooler temperatures. It is important to preserve the precise fruit expression and fresh vitality of the wines. This way, wines can be made to last…