Wine Tips

There is an infinite amount to know and learn about wine, and South Tyrol even has its own Wine Academy

We have followed 10 basic questions - 5 in general and 5 on the subject of South Tyrol - which are intended to provide a little insight into the interesting world of wines and winegrowers:

What are the 10 most cultivated grape varieties worldwide?

All in all, there are - an impressive number - about 10,000 grape varieties that are cultivated on an area of 8 million hectares worldwide. Predominant among them, from 1st to 10th place:

  • Cabernet Sauvignon (represented in South Tyrol)
  • Merlot (represented in South Tyrol)
  • Airén
  • Tempranillo / Cencibel
  • Chardonnay (represented in South Tyrol)
  • Syrah / Shiraz
  • Grenache / Garnacha
  • Trebbiano / Ugni blanc
  • Pinot noir (represented in South Tyrol)
  • Sangiovese

Chardonnay, Airén and Trebbiano are white wines, all other red wines.

What influences the taste of wine when drinking?

Glass, temperature, cork and ambience can all contribute to varying the taste: The stronger a red wine, the more volume the glass should have. For white wines, the glass should be bulbous for better oxygen contact.

What is the ideal serving temperature?

The reference to "room temperature" goes back to past times when houses were much cooler than they are today, so wine should be stored in a cool place. Serving temperatures:

  • red wines with elegant body: 12 - 14 degrees C
  • red wines with distinctive body: 14 - 16 degrees C
  • heavy, aged red wines: 16 - 18 degrees C
  • rosé wines: 10 - 12 degrees C
  • white wines: 8 - 10 degrees C
  • dessert wines: 5 - 6 degrees C
  • sparkling wines: 6 - 8 degrees C

In which order should the wines be drunk?

As a rule, white wines before red wines, dry wines before sweet wines, light wines before heavy wines, and young wines before older wines. It should also be possible to enjoy the individual notes without distraction, so it is best to avoid foreign smells, food and smoke when tasting.

What are rosé wines?

Rosé wines are very light-coloured wines - salmon to cherry red - made from red grapes, but treated like white wines and therefore also drunk chilled. The taste is also reminiscent of light red wines. The berries are only left on the mash for a very short time during production; the more intensive the contact, the more strongly it colours the wine.

How much wine is grown in South Tyrol?

South Tyrol's area under vines is over 5,000 hectares, with 84% along the Wine Road in the south of South Tyrol. From this, 400,000 to 500,000 hectolitres of wine are produced: 36% are red wines and 64% white wines. 98% of the cultivated area has D.O.P. quality.

Are there autochthonous grape varieties in South Tyrol?

There are several autochthonous grape varieties that are commercially cultivated in the province. These include Trollinger (Schiava), which was the dominant red wine variety in South Tyrol until the end of the 20th century, and Lagrein. Gewürztraminer, on the other hand, which has been present around Termeno since the 11th century, is also cultivated worldwide.

Is sparkling wine also produced in South Tyrol?

Already around 1900 there was a champagne cellar in Appiano and the first South Tyrolean sparkling wine. Sparkling wine is still produced in South Tyrol today, using grapes from Chardonnay, Pinot blanc and Pinot noir. One of the sparkling wine cellars, Arunda, is located in Meltina at 1,200 m a.s.l. and is widely known as the highest sparkling wine cellar in Europe.

Are there special South Tyrolean asparagus wines?

A very special white wine is produced during the Terlano asparagus season between March and May. It is a local Sauvignon blanc, a fresh and delicately fruity white wine from the Terlano Winery. The difference between this Sauvignon "Asparagus" and the usual Sauvignon: It is harvested separately and bottled a little earlier, which gives it its special taste.

Are there any South Tyrolean wine events?

In addition to the numerous wine farms and wineries that invite you to a tasting, there are many events that celebrate South Tyrolean wine, including - to name just a few - the Bolzano Wine Tasting in spring and the Caldaro Wine Hiking Day.

In the summer months, the South Tyrolean Pinot Noir Days, the Night of the Cellars as the conclusion of the Wine Road Weeks, and the "Calici di Stelle" event for the St. Lawrence Night of the falling stars in August follow. In autumn, the events continue until the end of October with the Termeno Wine Lane, the Bassa Atesina Wine Tasting Days, the "Last Cartload of Grapes" in Cornaiano, and the Caldaro Wine Culinary Festival.

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