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History of Schlumberger

 
Discover the history of a grand company, from the very beginning in 1842 to the newest product relaunches.

Our history

Robert Alwin Schlumberger

The founding father, Robert Alwin Schlumberger, was born in 1814, in Stuttgart. Following the untimely death of his father, Robert was forced to forfeit his studies and become a merchant. His journey led him to the oldest Champagne house in France, named Ruinart Pere et Fils, where he started is apprenticeship. His exceptional talent and his savy wine affinity soon prompted him to the position of chef de cave.

Portrait von Robert Schlumberger, dem Gründer des Familienunternehmens Schlumberger

Love on first sight

One summer day in 1841 R.A. Schlumberger met his wife to be Sophie Kirchner, from Vienna, on a ship cruise of the Rhine. Since her parents were opposed to letting their daughter move to Champagne, R.A. Schlumberger saw himself forced to move to Austria. However, he still wanted to continue producing sparkling wine. Hence, he visited different wine regions throughout Austria and found the perfect place to establish his own winery in Bad Vöslau.

Robert Alwin Begegnung mit der Wienerin Sophie Kirchner bei einer Schifffahrt auf dem Rhein
Sophie Kirchner die Begegnung

Bad Vöslau

Finally in 1842 the company Schlumberger Wein- und Sektkellerei was founded in Goldeck im Maital in Bad Vöslau. Ever since, Schlumberger stands for highest quality sparkling wines, combining the traditional Champagne method together with the innovative characters of its founding father, Robert Alwin Schlumberger.  Schlumberger received international fame and recognition in 1862 when the Sparkling Vöslauer was served to her Majesty the Queen of England during the World Exhibition. Shortly after he was also appointed a purveyor to the Austro-Hungarian K.u.K. Imperial Court.

Schlumberger Champagner Etikett
Schlumberger Champagner Werbung

Pioneer in Oenology

In the middle of the nineteenth century, Schlumberger became a pioneering producer of red wines. Robert Alwin Schlumberger was the first to plant and cultivate the French noble grape varieties, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, in Austria. This tradition is still upheld with the two Red Wines “Privatkeller” and “Privatissimo”.

Weltausstellung 1862 London schaffte es Sparkling Vöslauer auf die Weinkarte der Königin
Schlumberger Rotweintraube Privatkellerei

Nobility

Schlumberger became the drink of choice for the Imperial aristocracy and Austrian elite and Schlumberger himself was awarded with the hereditary peerage, the knights title, “Edler von Goldeck” in 1878

Rote Rebsorten und Arbeiter vor dem Sekthaus Schlumberger Mitte des 19 Jahrhunderts

Saint-Germain

After World War 1 and the treaty of St. Germain only sparkling wines where all ingredients came from the protected Champagne region in France were allowed to carry the name champagne. Henceforth Schlumberger produced sparkling wines using the methode champenoise, which translates to Champagne method.

Schlumberger historische Flaschenbefüllung
Schlumberger historische Dosagen Maschine

Four Generations

Four generations and two world wars later, the childless Robert Schlumberger IV sold his shareholding in the family winery to the Underberg Group from Germany.

Schlumberger Keller Lagerung edler Tropfen
Schlumberger Kellerwelten

Austria joins the EU

Upon joining the EU, Austrian sparkling wine producers can no longer use the term Methode Champenoise. Henceforth all sparkling wines using the traditional champagne methode are labelled Methode Traditionnelle.

Austrian Tradition

For a period of 41 years, Schlumberger formed part of the Underberg Group, a family owned business from Germany. In 2014, the Underberg Group sold its majority shareholding in Schlumberger Aktiengesellschaft (AG) to the Swiss holding company Sastre SA to become part of the portfolio owned by industrialist Dr Frederik Paulsen. The new majority shareholder is committed to the Austrian tradition and the deep-rootedness of Schlumberger AG in Austria. 

Schlumberger Fee mit einem Glas Sparkling Brut in der Hand
Schlumberger Gebäude Aussenansicht

Protected Designation of Origin  and the three-tier quality pyramid

With the implementation of the three-tier quality pyramid for Austrian Sekt Schlumberger introduced a whole new product range. All Schlumberger products adhere to the strict quality criteria introduced in 2015 by the Austrian government. Those criteria include the method of production, the origin of the grapes, juice extraction caps, dosage, fermentation on the lees and many more. For more information please visit the official Austrian Wine Website.

Die Schlumberger Qualitaetspyramide unterteilt in Grosse Reserve, Reserve und Klassik

Grand Reserve

Schlumberger presents its first issue of a Grand Reserve. The R. Schlumberger is an homage to the founding father himself and hence carries his name. It is a single-varietal, single-vintage, single-vineyard Chardonnay Cuvée which enjoys a prolonged fermentation on fine lees. The grapes are carefully picked and selected by hand to make sure, that only the best grapes are being processed. Upon sealing the bottles they rest a minimum of 30 months in our cellars which are subsequently hand-riddled on sloping racks. The R. Schlumberger Chardonnay Brut 2015 is limited to a mere 5.000 bottles.

Schlumberger Grosse Reserve mit Qualitätspyramide

New appearance - product redeign

As part of a comprehensive redesign all Schlumberger specialties are being introduced into the Austrian quality pyramid for sparkling wine: “Classic, Reserve” and “Grand Reserve”. The new design of the bottles is contemporary, shows reduced elegance and underlines the freshness of the products.
 

Entwicklung der Schlumberger Sparkling Flasche