Johann Donabaum works a relatively small family-estate in the Spitzer Graben valley at the northern end of the Wachau in a town that is home to quite a few of the Wachau's best-known names including Högl and Hirtzberger.
The Austrian press dubbed him a “Shooting Star” (that’s Austrian for Wunderkind) many years ago when we started working with Johann, but with increased age, experience, and continued success, this label no longer applies. Instead, Johann has firmly cemented himself in the upper echelon of Wachau producers and has developed a reputation for a very distinct Donabaum style, one that has been described a smooth and feminine without giving up on acidity and elegance. He achieves this by fermenting on native yeasts, exposing the wine to its fine lees late into spring, and by forgoing fining.
Donabaum’s vineyards are spread out in steeply raked sites as well as among terraced vineyards—the cool character of this corner of the Wachau allows him to produce wines that show a pronounced softness and rounded expression, always balanced by fresh acidity.