SOURCE: Alto Adige Wines

Alto Adige Wines

May 31, 2012 09:00 ET

Wines of the Italian Alps Wow Audiences During Grand Tasting Tour; Alto Adige Winemakers Sweep Through San Francisco & Pacific Northwest

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - May 31, 2012) - Like a gust of brisk Alpine air, producers from the Alto Adige region of Italy (also known as Südtirol) swept through the U.S. this April, stopping in San Francisco, Portland and Seattle for their first-ever West Coast blitz. Sommeliers, on- and off-premise wine buyers, media and local vintners flocked to standing-room-only seminars and walk-around tastings hosted by 22 producers from Italy's northernmost wine region. One-third the size of Napa Valley, Alto Adige represents less than 1% of Italy's total wine production, yet leads the country in quality with 98.8% of its wines meriting DOC (controlled denomination of origin) status.

In each city, Wolfgang Weber, freelance writer and wine professional, moderated a seminar panel of five winery principals. The panel focused on the diverse styles of five white and red varieties -- Pinot Grigio, Pinot Bianco, Gewürztraminer, Schiava and Lagrein -- examining the impact of different growing areas and winemaking approaches. Panelists represented the region's prestigious cooperative wineries, independent winegrowers and estates. Speakers included: Wolfgang Klotz of Tramin; Judith Unterholzner of Cantina Terlano; Martin Foradori Hofstätter of Tenuta J. Hofstätter; Patrizia Sparer of Cantina Bolzano; and Tobias Zingerle of Kellerei Kaltern-Caldaro.

Following each seminar, producers poured more than 200 wines from 20 different grape varieties during walk-around tastings. Thanks to 300 days of sunshine per year and terroirs ranging from warmer vineyards at 650 feet elevation to very cool, steep vineyards at 3,250 feet, Alto Adige produces an amazing range of indigenous and international varieties. Wolfgang Weber shared his thoughts, "Terroir is another word for tension. That nervous poise between mineral austerity and flavorful ripeness is the end goal for winemakers everywhere. I can't think of another region that has the potential to perfectly capture that sense of balance." He added, "There has never been a better time than now to experience the vivid wines of Alto Adige."

Martin Foradori Hofstätter, Vice President of the Alto Adige Wine Consortium commented, "The U.S. is the second most important export market for Alto Adige wines. We were especially pleased to see the interest from both the trade and the local vintners from these leading U.S. wine-producing regions. It's a testament to the high level of quality of our wines."

For more information about these Alpine wines visit Media please contact Adrienne Christner at (212) 605-0370 or via email at

The Alto Adige Wine Board was formed in 1975 by a group of winemaking companies to promote and strengthen the image of the wines from Alto Adige. The promotion fund is administered by the Export Organization South Tyrol (EOS) of the Chamber of Commerce Bolzano together with the Consortium of Alto Adige Wines. The Alto Adige Wine Board is active in Italy, Germany, Austria, England, Benelux, Switzerland and in the United States.

The objectives of the PROVINUS campaign, co-financed by the Italian State and the European Union, are to increase overall awareness of the DOC wines from Alto Adige, demonstrate their versatility with a wide range of foods, and showcase the diverse palette of wines that emanate from such a unique winegrowing region.

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