The Austrian wine journalist Helmut O. Knall (* 1956) alias “Knalli” had his first encounter with wine as a child, since the parents of his best friend Weingarten in Grinzing ( Wien ) and Wolkersdorf (Weinviertel-Lower Austria). After completing the university course for advertising and sales, followed almost 20 years in advertising and public relations. He came to Austria to the wine freak, wine journalist and “ambassador of Austrian wine” via red wines from Bordeaux, Burgundy and Italy. From the beginning of the 1980s, the most important wine fairs in Europe, such as the Vinitaly, the Vinexpo in Bordeaux, the ProWein visited in Düsseldorf or the London Wine Trade Fair. A first “aha experience” was a blue Portuguese from the very young Hannes Artner (Carnuntum-Lower Austria) Born 1989. From then on, Knall dealt particularly with insider tips from Austria, with the dry white wines and those from Alois cracker & Co. meanwhile legendary sweet wines.
The promotion of young, ambitious winemakers from Austria became his hobby. The idea arose to create an en primeur guide for Austrian wine, i.e. still young wines via barrel samples to taste and then accompany them later on the development path. The prominent winemakers of Austria were visited in painstaking efforts to convince and the first en Primeur Guide was published. Today, the Wine Guide Austria is one of the most comprehensive works on Austrian wine, in which more than 400 companies are listed with their wines. Some of his “young winemaker discoveries” are now celebrating export successes or have been named “Winegrower of the Year” by established print media. Knall is now a coveted jury member of many renowned wine tastings. He also worked as a winegrower in Wien for nine years and is an excellent cook.