For more than a decade, winemaker Roland Velich made an intense study of the world's greatest wines of terroir with the explicit goal of finding “that thing”, as he puts it, that a wine must possess in order to achieve greatness. When he felt he'd learned enough, he set out to make an Austrian red wine that belonged in the same pantheon as the great Grand Cru Burgundies, the Northern Rhône and the legendary vineyards of Barolo. So began the Moric project. Its medium is Blaufränkisch, expressed through ancient vines in a challenging growing region, meticulous biodynamic viticulture, obsessive sorting and fairly primitive winemaking techniques. The Burgenland Blaufränkisch is a brilliant starting point, while this beguiling variety reaches its zenith in the old-vine wines from Lutzmannsburg and Neckenmarkt.
Roland Velich comes from a Burgenland winemaking family but initially he worked as a croupier. It was 2001 when he kicked off the Moric project, working with seriously old vines that perhaps no one believed in quite as much as him. His zeal for this terroir and the Blaufränkisch grape has mercifully been matched by vision and skill. "Roland Velich makes the best Blaufränkisch on the planet. Full stop," says Jancis Robinson Purple Pages contributor, Alder Yarrow. Meanwhile this is also the favourite Blaufränkisch producer of Eric Asimov, the New York Times wine correspondent. "Moric, is a star in this world," he proclaims. And indeed he is.