Travel Guide to Trentino-Alto Adige Wine Region


The exceptional scenario of Trentino-Alto Adige wine region offers a wide range of landscapes: majestic white peaks, forests, wide valleys, rivers and lakes and enchanting plays of light between the peaks of the Dolomites. Both Mediterranean and alpine lightness give the cities of Bolzano and Merano an irresistible charm. The exquisite wines of the region are known far beyond the borders.


Check out the list of wine tastings & tours in Trentino-Alto Adige we prepared for you!

Odle, South Tyrol

Trentino-Alto Adige – a wide range of excellent wines

Trentino-Alto Adige wine region is located in the north of Italy and borders Austria to the north, Switzerland to the north-west, Lombardy to the west and Veneto to the south. Winegrowing has a long tradition in the region, which was once an important wine supplier to the Habsburg monarchy (to which Trentino belonged until 1918). Today, viticulture is dominated by cooperatives whose members cultivate most of the vineyards. However, a number of small and medium-sized businesses also hold their own well.

The region has vineyards of about 15,000 hectares. The winemakers from Trentino-Alto Adige wine region produce a huge variety of excellent wines and it is characterised with the highest share of DOC wines in Italy. Due to the mild climate of the Mediterranean, almost all red and white grape varieties can be planted in here.

Grape varieties

Trentino can boast a fairly broad variety of grape varieties. Fresh and lively fruity white wines are produced from the varieties Müller-Thurgau, Riesling Italico, Pinot Bianco, Pinot Grigio and international varieties such as Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay. In addition to the local Vernatsch and Lagrein, the red wines include international varieties such as Pinot Nero, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot.

Red grape varieties:

  • Vernatsch
  • Pinot Noir
  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Lagrein
  • Merlot

White grape varieties:

  • Chardonnay
  • Weißburgunder
  • Gewürztraminer
  • Muskateller
  • Müller-Thurgau
  • Riesling

 

The land of Pinot Grigio

The wine region of Trentino-Alto Adige has favourable conditions for white wine production. The white wines are fresh, fruity and pleasantly acidic. Pinot Grigio, which is also known as Pinot Gris in France is so far the leader of white wines here. Pinot Grigio from Trentino-Alto Adige wine region has higher acidity and neutral flavour profile unlike its counterparts from other countries. For example, ones produced in the Alsace wine region that Are more spicy and full-bodied.

Vineyards view in Santa Maddalena Bolzano. Trentino-Alto Adige wine region, Italy

Other fruity white wines

Together with Pinot Grigio, Trentino Alto-Adige wine region also produces other prominent white wines from Müller-Thurgau, Riesling Italico (Welschriesling), Pinot Bianco and Chardonnay. These varieties which flourish all around the picturesque town of Trento as well as in South Tyrol and a part of Veneto, are labeled under the collective name Valdadige DOC.

However, some of Trentino’s best wines are almost unknown to us because they come from small family wineries with only a few acres of cultivated land in the side valleys, such as the bizarre Val di Cembra. Probably one of the next DOC or DOCG regions with famous mineral and elegant wines.

The wine region of Trentino-Alto Adige is also known for sparkling wine production with the traditional method of bottle fermentation. The fine-pearly and expressive sparkling Trentodoc from Trentino-Alto Adige is among the best from Italy.

Red wine highlights

The grape variety number one in South Tyrol (Alto Adige) is indigenous red grape variety Vernatsch covering 1,300 hectares. So as well as in the most well-known DOC Kalterersee (Lago di Caldaro). The red wines are popular for their freshness, lightness, and simplicity.

TIP! You can find the indigenous grape variety Vernatsch in two wineries; Cantina Girlan and Weingut Loacker where you will be welcomed for a visit and tasting!

 

Among the red wines, the robust wines are produced from grape varieties Marzemino and Teroldego, which are cultivated only in Trentino. Marzemino produces medium-bodied wines that stand out for their brilliant red colour, floral-fruity scent, and bitter-sweet taste. The Teroldego, on the other hand, produces wines with intense colour and power. In the nose, it is already strong with intense berry fruit and enthralling scents of earth, truffle, and leather.

In addition to the local Vernatsch and Lagrein, the red wines include international varieties such as Pinot Nero, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot. The latter two can as well be found in a Cuvée, also outstanding qualities are developed in the barrique.


Where to taste these exquisite wines

We made a list of wineries in Trentino-Alto Adige wine region for you. Wineries that are open for visitors to share their passion and outcome of this passion with you!

Large wine tasting room in the magical winery Cantina Girlan.

TIP!

Cantina Girlan is a result and an involvement of a lot of different winemakers and vinegrowers working in cooperation. History of the winery started in 1923 with 23 vinegrowers which have grown to about 200 of them today.

Visit the winery and discover the secrets of South Tyrol wines and the way cooperatives work here.

 

 

weingut loacker_vineyard on the slopes

TIP!

Weingut Loacker is located in the beautiful hills near the city of Bolzano in the region of South Tyrol. There you not only have the chance to taste the alpine freshness but also taste the Tuscan wines like Brunello di Montalcino or Morellino di Scansano.

Visit the winery and taste their biodynamic wines produced with the respect of nature and traditions.

 


Vineyards in Eppan, Trentino-Alto Adige wine region, Italy

 

Explore German-Italian culture through its cities

Trentino-Alto Adige is a territory of cultural encounters. Germans, Italians and Ladins found a home together and of course, this mix of diversity is expressed in different aspects of their culture. Language, traditions, architecture and way of life. Cities bellow are the expression of this cultural diversity:

Bolzano – Pulsating center of South Tyrol

South Tyrol’s provincial capital lies between vineyards and the Dolomites.


The rich and varied history of the city can also be seen in the architectural styles: the medieval centre, the Art Nouveau style of the ending K & K monarchy and the Neoclassicism of the Mussolini dictatorship alternate with modern facades. Romantic streets, markets, and bustle will accompany your tour.

Be sure to visit the Laubengasse, the most famous street in Bolzano. It runs about 300 meters from east to west and used to be the trading route par excellence. It is still a popular shopping street today. From traditional to modern shops you will find everything your heart desires. Even if you are not in the shopping mood, the Laubengasse with its special flair invites you to stroll.

Cathedral of Bolzano, Trentino-Alto Adige, Italy

Enjoy an Aperol Spritz or a Hugo in one of the numerous cafes on the edge of Waltherplatz, the most famous square in Bolzano. Its namesake, Walther von der Vogelweide, towers as a white statue in the middle of the square. Or treat yourself to incredibly delicious chocolate or ice cream at Loacker, the waffle and chocolate specialist well-known beyond South Tyrol’s borders.

Meran – The Mediteranean paradise in Dolomits

Palm, cypresses and lemon trees – hardly another city in South Tyrol is as the Mediterranean as Merano. The spa has changed: from the meeting point of the European nobility to a modern gem with a historical backdrop. In Merano, everything seems even calmer, even more idyllic, even more beautiful, than elsewhere in South Tyrol.

The gardens of Trauttmansdorff Castle are Meran’s pride – and they do not stop growing. Opened in 2016, the “Garden for Lovers” is the new highlight of the twelve-acre facility high above the city.

Landschaft, Italien, Südtirol, Meran

Whether in the sun or rain: A stay at the spa is part of every visit to the traditional spa town. A glass cube in the middle of the city, the interior designed by the South Tyrolean star architect Matteo Thun. Or how about a chairlift ride up the mountain, from where you can walk to the town of Tyrol to enjoy a café and the view?

Brixen – the city with a beautfiul panorama

Brixen is the oldest city in South Tyrol. The old town offers an exciting link between the joie de vivre and contemplation. The unique cathedral square in the Alps, the numerous sacral buildings, the listed, large medieval old town, arcades and crenellated alleys, museum treasures, craft tradition and archaeological gems to discover – all that makes Brixen so multifaceted.

You can expect modern cafes and excellent restaurants, attractive shops and entertaining events. For history buffs, a visit to the cathedral, which was originally built in Romanesque style and was consecrated in 1758 in its present Baroque form, is worthwhile. The cloister of the cathedral is a building of great art-historical importance. It is a Romanesque building with 14C cross vaults. It is a prayer and burial place of the clergy.

Streets of Brixon, Trentino-Alto Adige, Italy

After visiting these wonderful towns, it is time to have exciting wine experiences in surrounding wineries. Have a look at the wine tastings & tours in Trentino-Alto Adige wine region, choose your favourite and enjoy your glass of wine in this beautiful setting! Cheers!

Surrounded by beautiful lakes and imposing mountain peaks

After some experiences in the vineyards, breathe in the fresh mountain air, relax on a lush green meadow and just enjoy the day! The landscape and nature in Trentino have so much to offer. Gentle hills alternate with rugged and imposing mountain peaks.

Mountain landscape of Trentino-Alto Adige wine region, Italy

Meraner Höhenweg – Very close to the sky

Named after the town of Meran, the trail winds for over 100 kilometres, with well-developed and signposted ways and paths, through mountain forests, alpine meadows and rugged rocky landscapes around the Texel Nature Park. Thus, the Meraner Höhenweg takes a special position among the many, very beautiful long-distance hiking trails in South Tyrol, because it surrounds one of the most beautiful natural parks in the country. On this beautiful hike, you can experience the interface between a pristine natural landscape and a cultural landscape unique to humans.

Kratzberger See – Uniquely beautiful mountain lake

The Kratzberger See is an ideal destination for peace seekers, nature lovers, and families. Far away from the noise, traffic and all infrastructures, the lake is nestled gently northeast below the Plattenspitze in a sunny location.

The ideal starting point to reach the Kratzberger See is the mountain station of the Meran cable car. Starting from the mountain station, follow the broad hiking trail towards the Miesensteiner Joch. Passing under the Ifinger, after a short climb, the landscape opens up and gives you a clear view of the “back” part of Merano. After about 40 minutes of a relatively slight incline, the path climbs slightly again, directly below the Meran-facing side of the Plattenspitze goes up to the Miesensteiner yoke, which marks the transition to the Sarntal. Here you can enjoy a wonderful view over Meran.

Once you have reached the lake, the beach feeling comes on immediately! The north shore, with its white sand and clear water, is almost like a dream beach in Sardinia, if only the water wouldn’t be so cold (about 3 degrees).

Stelvio Pass, Trentino-Alto Adige Region, Italy

Val die Rabbi – an alpine valley from a picture-book

The Val di Rabbi is one of the most enchanting valleys of Trentino due to its protected natural resources, most of which belong to the Stelvio National Park. The whole valley is crossed by a comfortable road, which runs for about 12 km along the clear, lively and fish-rich wild-river Rabbies. If you go up the valley, you will first find the village of Pracorno, with its many country houses. Shortly thereafter, you will reach San Bernardo, the seat of all services of public interest.

Südtirol, Drei Zinnen, Dolomiten

Continuing along the torrent, you will reach the village of Rabbi Fonti, where you will find the park’s thermal bath and visitors’ center, while above it, in a dominant position, rises the Piazzola district. Visitors can look down on green slopes, dense coniferous forests and the peaks of the Ortles Cevedale mountain range.


A hearty and refined mountain kitchen of Trentino-Alto Adige

Since South Tyrol belonged to Austria for a long time and thus to the Austro-Hungarian KuK monarchy, the influence of German, Austrian, Hungarian and Slavic cuisine is clearly noticeable here. The traditional cuisine of the farmers of South Tyrol and Trentino is a very poor, calorie-containing and hearty cuisine, based on the little that the soil and the harsh climate of the Dolomites offer.

So, Sauerkraut and bacon are just as typical Hungarian goulash and typical Austrian dumplings (“canederli”), in Trentino an integral part of the kitchen.

Schlutzkrapfen – a Tyrolean pasta specialty

Schlutzkrapfen, short Schlutzer is a regional Pasta speciality from Tyrol. They are similar to Italian ravioli and are therefore called ravioli Tirolesi in Italy.

Schlutzkrapfen, dish from South Tyrol

Schlutzkrapfen is made with a mixture of rye and wheat flour. The filling traditionally consists of meat from veal or beef or potatoes, in South Tyrol especially from a spinach-pot combination or Rohnen (beetroot). In the latter case, the dish is served with poppy seeds. You will also find variations with fillings of onions, nutmeg, and egg. A Tyrolean classic is Schlutzkrapfen with beet and bacon filling, and in parts of East Tyrol, this speciality is found with a potato filling as Schlipfkrapfen.

In any case, you should not miss trying this delicacy if you visit the region.

Apfelstrudel – an apple a day keeps the doctor away

… and with this sweet treat from Trentino, you will eat even more apples than ever before. Trentino is one of the most important regions in Europe for the cultivation of apples of high quality, even if the cultivated areas in the valley and on some hills are limited. The cultivation, quality control and sale of apples are regulated by so-called cooperatives, including well-known names such as “Melinda” or “la Trentina”.

Strudel, Apfelstrudel, Apfel, Obst

So the apple strudel is a typical dessert of the Alpine region, where it has become a symbol of local culinary tradition. For this purpose, puff pastry is filled with fresh, small-cut apples, sugar, pine nuts, sultanas, cinnamon and butter. This fits a lukewarm sauce made out of sparkling Trentodoc.

Schüttelbrot – the crispy flatbread

South Tyrolean Schüttelbrot might not be missed during a traditional South Tyrolean snack. The Schüttelbrot tastes especially good when served with South Tyrolean bacon, mountain cheese, smoked sausage and a glass of South Tyrolean red wine.

It is a crunchy flatbread made from rye flour, water, yeast, salt and various spices such as cumin, fennel seeds, aniseed, Schabzigerklee or coriander. It is characterized by long durability.


Share about Trentino-Alto Adige wine region:

Region Highlights

Surface: 15.000
Wineries:
Soil: porphyry, clay, alluvial soil
Climate: Continental

Selected wineries in Trentino-Alto Adige

Arunda
Highest sparkling winery in Europe making traditional Metodo Classico sparkling wine
Azienda Agricola Cesconi
Azienda Agricola Cesconi, with implementation of principles of biodynamics
Azienda Agricola De Tarczal
Get Invited to a Snack Party, La Vineria de Tarczal, with the Owner, Ruggero
Balter
Step back into wine making history

Wine tastings & tours in Trentino-Alto Adige

Wine tasting and tour at Arunda
Head over to Arunda winery for sparkling wine tasting and a guided cellar tour
Wine tasting and tour at Azienda Agricola Cesconi
Enjoy a well guided tour in the hills of Presanno at Azienda Agricola Cesconi
Wine tasting and tour at Azienda Agricola De Tarczal
A Charismatic Journey that includes Wine Tasting and a Visit to Historic Cellar
Wine tasting and tour at Balter
Enjoy a range of wines in this unique and historical setting

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Map of Wineries in Trentino-Alto Adige wine region

Discover the long wine tradition of Trentino-Alto Adige and discover some of the best wineries in this region

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List of Wineries in Trentino-Alto Adige wine region

Arunda