What the Warter family has established at 980 meters above sea level in recent years is unique: on the mountain, Mama Doris’ pastries, one of the last mountain pine oil production sites in the Alps and a location right on the border between Salzburg and Styria are tempting. In 2008, Bernhard Warter completed the expansion from oil – from which Katharina Warter creates wonderful natural cosmetics – to whisky. And with Katharina’s sister Theresa, the next generation is already making single malts from the Alm.
The distiller provides the “rock”, as the whisky made from malted barley from the Schladming brewery is called. The single malt, which has been stored for five years, is tasted with a view of the Dachstein, accompanied by samples of the “experiments” - for example with smoked malt. Other distillates also mature in oak barrels in the Ennstal Alps. We just say: “Banana Barrique”. And as if that weren’t enough to look and enjoy, the “Mandlberggut” has been expanded to include a guest house with old wood: ideal for extended tastings in groups!
Up on the mountain
One thing right away. Whether you drink whisky or not, this is a must-see destination. As soon as you drive up with a view of the Dachstein, you get the feeling of having arrived. On the Alm or in the Photoshop program is still open, but in any case in a real world of experience. About individual buildings, it goes to different topics. From the mountain pine oil distillery, via our own fish pond, past the cows, you end up directly at the whisky before two donkeys line the path. Dachstein mountain spring water and the local Manhartsberger oak guarantee the best conditions for “rock whisky”. In the specially excavated earth cellar, used Austrian red and sweet wine barrels from Burgenland mix under the oak barrels to give the single malt its fruity, vanilla aroma. Here they know how to bottle the forces of nature. Before you move on, you should definitely treat yourself to the homemade strudel and plan your next visit.
Dachstein research project “Rock Whisky”
The “Rock Whisky” is put to the toughest test in Styria. On the highest mountain, coldest temperatures and inside a glacier. How does the single malt develop after it has rested for 5 years in handmade oak barrels in the Dachstein Glacier at about 3,000 m above sea level, with temperatures around freezing and the harsh conditions at this altitude? Will it live up to its reputation as a whisky and more importantly its name “Rock Whisky”?
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