On this week's episode of In the Drink, host Joe Campanale is joined in the studio by Martin Arndorfer of the Martin & Anna Arndorfer winery.

Martin Arndorfer comes from a long line of wine makers, growing up in the vineyards and cellar of his parents estate. Anna Steininger is the daughter of one of the top and most respected wine makers in Austria, Karl Steininger, quite simply, they are a match made in ‘wine’ heaven. Both born with a natural, and it seems in that region, almost genetic understanding and love of the Riesling and Gruner Veltliner grapes.

Martin truly fell in love with winemaking at the tender age of 12, but even before tried to play sick from kindergarten because he preferred to stay in the vineyards with his mother, and on the tractor with dad. Anna was basically ‘born in the cellar’ and has been helping with the wine making since the time she could walk.

After attending a winemaking school that has been teaching future winemakers since 1860, Martin headed off to Italy to get some practical training (and thought he might eat quite well while there as well). Martin still lends much of his inspiration to two Italian producers; Ronco del Gnemiz run by Serena Palazzolo where he experienced his first full bodied whites matured in small oak barrels, and Fabrizio Iuli (yes the same Fabrizio Iuli that was my inspiration to start Indie Wineries). With Fabrizio he learned how to make, “complex and straightforward red wines of outstanding quality”. These two wineries sparked his interest in thrilling red wines and his passion for barriques. He said in both cases, he has also found friends for a lifetime. Thanks to Anna’s gentle persuasion he then attended the University of Austria and graduated with a degree in “International Wine Management.” He is currently studying for his master degree in the same major.

When Martin returned from Italy, he and Anna moved in together, and not only did they unite their living spaces, but also their love, ideas, passion and knowledge for winemaking starting their own label, ‘Arndorfer’. The M & A on the bottle stand for, yes you guessed, Martin and Anna.