Visiting wineries in Trentino Alto Adige has never been so fun!
Trentino Alto Adige is one of the most exciting destinations for wine enthusiasts, a land with two very different souls, in some ways contradictory, but where wine is considered sacred, no matter if the winemakers speak Italian or German, the passion is still the same.
Quantify the beauty of a land so full of wonders is impossible, but we will do our best to describe this territory, giving an account of our last wine wandering, with tips and insights on wineries, restaurants and itineraries off the beaten path, so that you can plan your wine tour in Trentino Alto Adige. Do you want a fast & furious week with five winery visits a day or do prefer to take it easy and switch some grappa tastings to trekking, walking between lakes, cheese producers and castles scattered among the Dolomites?
Why Trentino Alto Adige is terrific for a wine holiday
First of all, Trentino & South Tyrol are ideal for traveling: the A22 Brennero motorway runs from south to north, touching all the points of interest of the region. The wine roads run parallel to the highway and to reach the cellars you just have to go out the highway, make a few kilometers and you will find yourself surrounded by the vineyards.
The number of good wineries is impressive and you will find top-notch native grapes that grow only here: Teroldego, Marzemino, Nosiola, Müller Thurgau, Lagrein and Gewurztraminer. And even when they are not native, they are grown in so special climates and soils and with such mastery that they become typical and assume special features, unique fragrances. Think for a moment about Trento DOC: Chardonnay and Pinot Noir were not born in Trentino, nevertheless, Trentino sparkling wines are quite rightly considered among the best spumanti in Italy. Yes, it’s all about the terroir: man’s intuition plus soil’s peculiarity.
Another reason that will push you to Trentino Alto Adige is the variety, the uniqueness of this land. Every valley contains little treasures, has its own microclimate, soils and different shades that result in a handicraft production of Slow Food cheeses and cold cuts and in a myriad of landscapes and cultures. Despite being a small region, Trentino-Alto Adige is immense for a scrupulous foodie and is likely you will come back to visit it on several occasions. Not only ancient castles and knödel (dumplings), but also contemporary art, with the Mart in Rovereto, which has a rich selection of restaurants offering an original reinterpretation of the classic Alpine cuisine, such as Trivio of chef Francesco Pace.
And then there are the Dolomites, framing the landscape: they will accompany you throughout the trip. These cliffs are the secret of this El Dorado of the wine. All the Adige valley is surrounded by the mountains, which protect from the freezing wind of the north, creating a great habitat for the cultivation of the vine. The main ingredient of the success of wines of Trentino Alto Adige is the extraordinary complexity of the soils, of these mountains.
The food is not far behind and you will find the same strong, earthy, delicious flavors. Mushrooms, game such as deer and wild boar, mountain cheeses, smoked sausages, carne salada (salted meat), Speck. The honey speaks the language of the mountains too, just visit the beekeepers near Monte Bondone or those of the Lavarone plateau and your palate will discover new sensations.
By the way, did you know that Trentino Alto Adige is one of the most northerly regions in which extra virgin olive oil is produced? The climatic conditions created by the Lake Garda allow a very limited, but precious, production: pure liquid gold.
We want to conclude by noting that is strongly increasing the number of winegrowers who have converted to organic and biodynamic farming, to be able to give back wines that are as pure as possible.