Alto adige italy

Alto adige italy

Trentino Alto Adige Region Map & Guide

Have an Adventure in Northern Italy and Practice Your German!

Trentino-Alto Adige is Italy’s northernmost region. It consists of two self-governing provinces, Trentino in the south and Südtirol, the northern province bordering Austria—and to the west by Switzerland—called Alto Adige by the Italians. South Tyrol is mountainous and covered by forestland.

Why go? The Italian tourist board gives a few hints

Let’s take a look at the map and the top cities.

Map of Trentino — Alto Adige

friuli venezia giulia map

Getting Your Bearings

Trento is the capital of the southern Trentino province. Bolzano is the capital of the Alto Adige. To German speakers, it’s the Südtirol; the North Tirol is in southern Austria.

Select Cities in Trentino

Rovereto

Few Americans have discovered Rovereto, a small town wedged into the Lagarina valley along the Leno River near its confluence with the Adige. It’s south of Trento on the Brenner-Verona railway so there’s easy access if you’re taking the train. It once protected the southern flanks of the region, so there’s a 14th century castle built on a Roman fortress. It’s now a war museum containing the most extensive collection of war artifacts in Italy (closed on Mondays, shown below).

rovereto castle

Castello di Rovereto

Italy’s second largest bell commemorates the fallen from a hill south of town.

North of the town near the plain above the point where the battle of Caliano was fought in 1487 is the fairytale Castel Pietra. You can book a visit online. The price at time of writing is 5 euro per person. Note the translation available from the toolbar. Check the events listing for things like «Aperitif in the Woods» which includes a drink in the woods and a tour of the manor at night.

To Stay: The highly rated Casa del Pittore is a ten minute walk from the town center and you can relax in a garden fitted with a hot tub, deck chairs and parasols. If you’re searching for inexpensive lodging in the center with parking, you might look into the Hostel: Ostello Di Rovereto.

Riva del Garda

Riva del Garda is a resort town that sits upon the northernmost point of Lake Garda, west of Rovereto. Nietzsche and Kafka relaxed here, so expect to be philosophical, literary or turn into an insect while you’re on vacation. The castle, dating to around 1124, is right on the lake shore and now houses the city museum and art gallery.

The Palazzo Pretorio, built in the 14th century, is also on the water.

Walkers at all levels of endurance might find a trail to enjoy on Garda Trek. The long walk takes you from «the cliffs of the lake to the mountain pasture land of Mount Stivo and Altissimo.» You’ll need a week or so to do it.

Just outside the city to the northeast is Arco, which has a commanding view of the lake and a castle.

To Stay: Prices of lodging in Riva del Garda tend to be higher in spring than in fall or even summer. Tourists dwindle after September.

Trento

Formerly part of Austria and Austria-Hungary, Trento was annexed by Italy in 1919. It’s one of Italy’s most prosperous cities. It was a Celtic village before the Romans conquered it in the 1st century BC.

The Duomo is a Romanesque-Gothic cathedral built on a Roman basilica which you can view by descending into the crypt. Next to the duomo is the Palazzo Pretorio. Built in the 12th century it has a bell tower from the 13th century and hosts a collection of baroque paintings of religious scenes. Bishops lived here until the mid-13th century.

Gothic frescoes are found in the Buonconsiglio Castle which also contains the Provincial Gallery of Art.

See examples of modernist architecture in the train station and the post office.

To Stay: For the tranquil resort experience in the hills above Trento the Villa Madruzzo will fit the bill. If you’re looking for a centrally located hotel, the Hotel America is a 5 minute walk from Castel Buonconsiglio.

Madonna di Campiglio

The village and ski resort in the Dolomites is considered one of the best in Italy. The ski area handles more than 31,000 people an hour. It hosts World Cup alpine skiing and snowboarding races. The season starts late November and runs through the middle of April. Here’s some information for skiers.

Bolzano

Bolzano or Bozen is the capital city of the province and is on the train line from Italy to Munich. Bolzano had a good medieval center and Gothic Duomo.

Castel Roncolo was built in 1237 by the Lords of Wangen and offers the tourists some good medieval frescoes to view. You’ll have to leave your car in the free parking lot below the castle and walk 8 minutes up the «Kaiser- Franz- Josef-Weg» path. Closed Monday.

Other cultural attractions provided by the

  • The South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology documents the Prehistory and Ancient History of South Tyrol, from the Old Stone Age to Carolingian times. You can see » Ötzi», a man with a five thousand year past here.
  • The Municipal Museum contains the richest collections of art and cultural history of their kind in South Tyrol.
  • The Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (Museion) of Bolzano presents modern and contemporary art in temporary exhibitions as well as in public spaces.
  • The Mercantile Museum traces the economic history of Bolzano and is housed in the Mercantile Building.
  • The Museum of Nature South Tyrol offers a detailed overview of the scientific, cultural and historical aspects of one of the most varied European regions and illustrates the origin and appearance of South Tyrol’s unique mountain and valley habitats.
  • The Messner Mountain Museum Firmian presents information about the mountains and its people.
  • The ar/ge kunst Gallery Museum of Bolzano.

Bressanone

Bressanone or Brixen has a good medieval center with porticoed walkways, fine buildings, and a river. Bressanone has a heavy German influence and many people still speak German rather than Italian.

The 10th century cathedral was rebuilt in the 13th century and again in the 18th. The Diocesan Museum includes a presepe (Italian manger scene) with 5000 figures.

The Pharmacy Museum shows the development of the pharmaceutical profession over the centuries. Yes, there is evidence of the age-old beaver-testicle based cure presented here. The Peer family has owned the pharmacy since 1787.

To Stay: August, September and December are the big tourist times in Bressanone. The 500 year old Hotel Elephant is highly rated and has a great location. Less expensive in the same part of town is the Alter Schlachthof.

Merano

The mild climate of Merano or Meran has contributed to its popularity as a popular spa and resort destination for a couple hundred years. The medieval town is on the right bank of the river Passirio. As befitting a health resort there promenades along the river and in the nearby hills. The town has many castles as well.

To Stay: The highly rated Hotel Therme Meran sits next to the spa in Central Merano. The panoramic spa comes with 2 saunas, 3 hot tubs, swimming pools, gym, and a studio for beauty treatments.

Transportation in the Trentino Alto Adige region

There are no major airports here, but the Trento-Venice railway connects Trento to Mestre, where it connects to the main line from Verona. The Brenner Railway connects Italy to Austria, so there is train service from Innsbruk to Verona passing through the Brenner Pass.

Food and Wine of the Trentino — Alto Adige

The cuisine in the Trentino-Alto Adige is mix of Italian and Austrian so you’ll find dumplings, canederli, as well as meat filled ravioli.

Speck, a smoked ham popular in colder climes where prosciutto can cure in the chimney of a fireplace, is a staple of this region. Beef, pork, hare, and venison frequent the menu as does trout from all the mountain streams. Polentas made of cornmeal or buckwheat are frequently found.

Apples and mushrooms play a large part in the cuisine, too. Val di Non apples make their way into the famous apple strudel, which is celebrated during the «Week of the Apple Strudel» in the Altopiano dello Sciliar during the harvest season, usually in the first half of September. in fact, one in five apples eaten in Italy comes from Trentino, due to the favorable conditions and long ripening season here.

Good DOC wines are produced in the hills from grapes that will be familiar to Americans, including Pinot, Riesling, and Traminer whites and Cabernet and Merlot reds.

Enjoy the Trentino Alto Adige region of Italy. There’s a lot to see and do here—and eat!

Planning a Trip?

Here are some travel planning tools that are especially useful if you’re planning your first or second trip to Italy.

Trentino-Alto Adige

Like other regions along the northern Italian border, Trentino-Alto Adige has something of a split personality – and though it hasn’t always managed to marry its Italian and Germanic history perfectly as far as politics are concerned, the integration of the two makes the region an interesting one to visit.

It’s easy to forget that a country with as much historic importance as Italy is, as a country, so incredibly young – until, that is, you learn that the Trentino-Alto Adige region was part of the Austro-Hungarian empire until as recently as 1919. The region’s other name, Südtirol, or “South Tyrol,” refers to its geographic position as the southern part of the Tyrol area of Austria.

Trentino-Alto Adige occupies a large piece of northeastern Italy along the northern border of the country. It’s an incredibly mountainous region, with parts of both the Dolomites and the Alps within its borders. Owing partly to its Austro-Hungarian history, Trentino-Alto Adige is one of the autonomous regions of Italy – and within the region, there are two autonomous provinces. Indeed, you’re just as apt to hear German spoken in some parts of the region as you are Italian.

This page contains a basic overview of travel information for Trentino-Alto Adige, including links to other articles on WhyGo Italy to help you plan your Trentino-Alto Adige trip. Please let me know if you have trouble finding what you’re looking for.

Quick links to Trentino-Alto Adige travel resources:

Trentino-Alto Adige: Fast Facts

  • The official name for the region – Trentino-Alto Adige – is both the Italian and English name, and it’s pronounced tren|TEE|noh AL|toh AH|dee|jay. But there’s an additional name for the region that you’ll hear in some of the more German-influced areas – Südtirol (pronounced SOOD|tee|roll).
  • The capital city of Trentino-Alto Adige is Trento.
  • Trentino-Alto Adige is one of only five Italian regions with no UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
  • The Trentino-Alto Adige region is one of five autonomous regions in Italy.
  • Trentino-Alto Adige shares a border with both Austria and Switzerland in the north, as well as the Italian regions of Lombardy and Veneto.
  • Famous people from Trentino-Alto Adige include famed director Nanni Moretti, actress Francesca Neri, and showgirl Adriana Volpe.
  • People from Trentino-Alto Adige are called different things depending on which part of the region they hail from. Those from Trentino are called trentini (that’s the masc. pl. form; others are trentino – masc. sing., trentina – fem. sing., and trentine – fem. pl.), and those from Alto Adige are called sudtirolesi (that’s the plural form; the singular form is sudtirolese) because the region is also known as the Sudtirol.

Where to Stay in Trentino-Alto Adige

While the Trentino-Alto Adige isn’t high on the must-visit list of many first-time visitors to Italy, it remains incredibly popular with tourists year-round. Winters mean a large influx of ski-related tourism, and fairer weather brings people to the region’s beautiful lakeside as well as to hiking in the mountains. Still, it may surprise you to know that the Trentino-Alto Adige region has the highest concentration of hotels than any other region in Italy.

During prime vacation seasons (which translates to both winter and summer) in Trentino-Alto Adige, then, while there are plenty of rooms to house all the people who visit you’d be smart to book well in advance to get the best spots at the best rates.

If you’re looking for more budget-friendly options, don’t overlook the various hostels listings in towns throughout the region, too – these contain listings for small, budget hotels as well as bona fide hostels. Other budget options include renting a vacation home for a stay of a few days or longer, or, if you’re doing some hiking through the mountains, taking advantage of the rustic rifugi set up for people on longer than simple day hikes.

Here are some links to articles about hotels and hostels in some of the cities in Trentino-Alto Adige:

What to Do & See in Trentino-Alto Adige

The main tourist draw in the Trentino-Alto Adige region is the great outdoors – especially its many mountains that are excellent for winter sports as well as summer hiking. Lake Garda peeks into a portion of the region, and that’s another popular place to spend a holiday.

The mountaintop ski resort towns often look like Swiss or Austrian villages (because they once were), and the region’s Germanic history also turns up in the local food specialties, too. Like every other region in Italy, Trentino-Alto Adige has its own wine producing areas, and it also happens to be famous throughout the country for its apples.

There are also old-fashioned spa resort towns in Trentino-Alto Adige, including some that have long been popular with European royalty.

Where to Go in Trentino-Alto Adige

From lakeside spots to mountain ski resorts, there are cities and towns at all elevations in Trentino-Alto Adige – and although many of them have names you may not recognize, this region is a popular tourist destination for a reason. Many of the towns are either ski resorts or spa resorts, and there’s also fascinating history (ancient and more modern) in these mountains.

Here are a few of the cities and towns of Trentino-Alto Adige you might have on your list (because many of these towns have German names that are just as common as their Italian ones, the German name is in parentheses):

The Top Cities to Visit in Trentino Alto Adige, Italy

martha bakerjian photo, italy travel

The Trentino-Alto Adige, or South Tyrol, region is Italy’s northernmost region. It’s mountainous and has lots of rivers and lakes to explore. Medieval towns and castles dot the region and it’s a great place to go for Christmas markets because of the Austrian influence.

The A22 Autostrada (the line shown on the map) runs through the center of the region from the Brenner pass in the north and continues south to Verona and beyond. A major rail line also runs near the autostrada. To the north of Trentino-Alto Adige is Austria. A small section of Switzerland abuts the region’s northwest corner. To the east is the Veneto region, and to the west is Lombardy and the Lakes region.

Provinces of the Trentino Alto Adige Region

The Trentino-Alto Adige region is broken into two provinces. The southern province of Trentino is mostly Italian speaking while in the northern province of the Alto Adige, called Sudtirol or the South Tyrol, the inhabitants speak mostly German and towns have both an Italian and a German name. The South Tyrol was part of Austria-Hungary before being annexed by Italy in 1919.

Both provinces are bordered by mountains and have good opportunities for skiing and winter sports as well as mountain hiking from late spring through early fall. Our Trentino-Alto Adige Map shows the most interesting towns to visit in the region.

Trentino Province (Southern) Principal Towns

  • Trento, on the train line between Italy and Munich, is the capital of the province. Trento has a 14th century Duomo, a castle, some handsome 15th-16th century buildings, the 11th century Torre Civica (tower), and a 13th century palazzo.
  • Rovereto is often overlooked by tourists but is a nice place to visit. Rovereto’s streets are lined with old palaces and stately buildings. There is a war (and peace) museum in town, too.
  • Madonna di Campiglio is one of the best ski resorts in the Dolomites with many miles of ski slopes of all levels, but it’s also popular for its summer residences. There are lots of lodging options here.
  • Riva del Garda is on the northern tip of Lake Garda which protrudes a little into the Trentino region. Riva is a popular summer resort, especially for Austrians and Germans.

Alto Adige (Northern) Principal Towns

  • Bolzano or Bozen is the capital city of the province and is on the train line from Italy to Munich. Bolzano had a good medieval center and Gothic Duomo. Castel Roncolo has some good medieval frescoes.
  • Bressanone or Brixen has a good medieval center with porticoed walkways, fine buildings, and a river. Bressanone has a heavy German influence and many people still speak German rather than Italian.
  • Merano or Meran has been a popular spa and resort town for a couple of hundred years because of its mild climate. The medieval town is on the right bank of the river Passirio. There's a 15th century castle and walkways along the river and in the nearby hills.

Food and Wine of the Trentino-Alto Adige

The cuisine in the Trentino-Alto Adige is a cross between Italian and Austrian so you'll find dumplings, canederli, as well as meat filled ravioli. Speck, a smoked ham, comes from this region. Beef, pork, hare, and venison frequent the menu as does trout. Apples and mushrooms play a large part in the cuisine, too. Good DOC wines are produced in the hills including Pinot, Riesling, and Traminer whites and Cabernet and Merlot reds.

Trentino Alto Adige Sightseeing

Trentino Alto Adige Travel Guide

Trentino Alto Adige sightseeing includes Alpine vistas and medieval history. During winter alpine sports reign. During summer hiking and biking are popular. Sightseeing for non-sports people include charming towns and fine wines to enjoy the pleasant air and views.

Trentino, along with Alto Adige, which is also known as South Tyrol, are the two provinces which make up the region of Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol. It is designated an autonomous region under Italy’s constitution.

For more about Trentino Alto Adige sightseeing read the travel guide below.

Trentino Alto Adige Travel Guide Map

Trentino Alto Adige is located in northeastern Italy. It is above the region of Veneto. It borders Switzerland and Austria. Trentino is renowned for its mountains, the Italian Dolomites, which are part of the Alps.

Trentino Alto Adige Travel Guide Video

For more information about Trentino Alto Adige sightseeing and planning a trip to Northern Italy watch the video below.

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Trentino Alto Adige Sightseeing Highlights

Hiking, skiing, and other outdoor mountain activities are popular things to do in the Trentino-Alto Adige region.

Trento

Trento, the capital of the region, is the perfect destination to plan a vacation to the area. Trento secured its place in history when the Council of Trent met and deliberated here from 1545 to 1563. Prompted by the Protestant Reformation, the council laid down the rules and forms of the Counter-Reformation that shaped subsequent Roman Catholic doctrine into modern times.

The Council met in what is one of Trento’s sightseeing highlights, the Duomo. Attached to the Duomo is the Palazzo Pretorio, where the Diocesan Museum is located. The collection provides insight into the history of local wood carving and sculpture artistic styles and techniques.

Strolling along the streets of Trento Via Belenzani is a must walk to admire the painted facades.

From 1814 through World War I Trento was part of Austria. In 1914 it became part of Italy. Inside the Castello del Buonconsiglio is the Museum of the Risorgimento, which chronicles Italy’s struggle to become a unified independent country free of the Austro-Hungarian Emprire.

Bolzano

Bolzano is the capital of Alto Adige, also known as South Tyrol.

Lake Carezza

Although located in the mountains most of Lake Carezza’s water is supplied by underground springs. The lake is spectacular because of its unique rainbow gradients and it is easy to access. No need to hike or have a long walk there. It is a small lake. The reflections of the Dolomite mountains behind make it a marvelous place to be and to take pictures.

There’s a walkway around the lake which takes about half an hour to complete. Note that you can’t swim or get close to the water as the lake is fenced.

Lake Resia

Lake Resia is manmade built in 1950. Up until then there were three lakes in this area: Lake Resia, Lake Curon and Lake San Valentino alla Muta. When the reservoir was dammed after the construction of the dam wall (1947-1949), the locality of Curon Venosta as well as much of Resia were flooded and destroyed.

The only remnant of old Curon is the steeple of a submerged 14th-century church, which still towers out of the waters and is nowadays a historical landmark. The lake is famous for this sight, which is a clue that people once lived here. It is also draws many who want to see this sight.

There’s a ferry boat nearby that takes visitors on a 30-minute tour around the lake. It’s a lot of fun for kids and a good picnic spot. The path that circumnavigates the lake is popular with walkers and cyclists. There are small towns at either end.

Merano

Merano is charming village located about an hour and half from Bolzano in the Italian Alps. The town’s Christmas market is popular. It’s river includes a nice walking path.

Outside Merano is the medieval Tyrol Castle. From the 11th to 15th century the castle was where the Counts of Tyrol lived, which gives the area its name. Today the castle is the South Tyrol Museum of History.

To reach the castle is about 30 minute walk from closest parking. The walk is quite beautiful with vineyards and mountain views along the way.

Stelvio Pass

The mountain pass between Bolzano and Switzerland climbs to 9,000 feet with 48 hair pin turns. This makes the pass popular among those who are drawn to high mountain roads. The Stelvio region is the only summer skiing destination in Europe making it popular.

For more information about touring Italy check out our Italy travel guide.

Alto adige italy

Origin of the name:
This region has two names because itis composed by two separate regions: the southern part is Trentino that takes its name from the chief town, that is Trento, from the Latin Tridentum (ancient town hall) and the part northern Tall Adige, call so because it is situated in the basin of the superior course of this river. South Tirol is the German name of tall Adige because up to 1918 this region belonged to Austrian territory of Tirol. Subsequently the region was called Venice Tridentina up to 1948, year when taken the actual name.

The Valley of Solda
The Valley of Solda

Other valleys to remember are: Val of Sun, Val Pusteria and the Val di Non crossed by the river Noce, Valleys of Cembra, Valley of Fiemme and Val of Fassa crossed from the river Avisio, Val Sugana crossed by Brenta and Val Gardena.
The passes that put Trentino Tall Adige in communication with Austria, are Footstep of Resia, Footstep of Dobbiaco and that of Brennero. Between Lombardy and Trentino-tall Adige there are Footstep of Stelvio and the footstep of Tonale. Footstep Pordoi and Footstep Rolle put in communication the Region with Veneto.

Panorama of Merano
Panorama of Merano

Agriculture — Stock-farm — Fishing:
The principal products that are cultivated in the valleys, are: potatoes, vegetables and fruit trees (cherries, plum trees and above all apple trees). There are vineyards that damns excellent wines, some of which very appreciated. Trentino Tall Adige is one of the woodiest regions in Italy: there are above all larici, red firs, woodland pines and beech trees.

Industry — Tourism:
One of the greatest wealths is the abundance of hydroelectric basins. Besides Trentino-tall Adige, producing superior energy to the regional requirement, exports in the other regions. Some handicraft workmanships as that of the carved wood and of the furniture, are typical in Trentino-tall Adige. To underline more still the natural beauties of this Region, the man has contributed building what was necessary to be able to appreciate them mostly: hotel organization, shelters alpine and numerous stations of vacation winter and summer that are the resources of great wealth of the country. We remember some of the most important: Stelvio, Ortisei, Madonna of Campiglio, Dobbiaco, Predazzo and Canazei.

Position and Frontier:
This region is that situated more to north of Italy. Its territory is set in the southern part of a line of the oriental Alps and contains the mountain basin of Adige. To north it confines with Switzerland and with Austria where the political confinements also coincide, to east it confines with Veneto, to south with Veneto and Lombardy and to west with Lombardy.

The Lake of Garda with Baldo mountain on the background
The Lake of Garda with
Baldo mountain on the background

Climate:
The climate of this Region is very rigid in the months winter and fresh in the summer periods. During the winter there are abundant and frequent snowfalls, while in spring and autumn often rains.

Population:
In Trentino Tall Adige two ethnic groups that speak two different languages cohabit. In the province of Trento is spoken Italian while in the province of Bolzano it usually speaks each other the German and really for this motive, the bilingualism is in force. The German language, so, has recognized officially and it is used together with that Italian. In some valleys of mountain of Trentino, Ladino has spread, that is a language that derives from Latin but different from Italian. This region is one of less inhabited; the mountain, especially in Trentino, extend to depopulate and the inhabitants are assembled in the valleys very more where there are more possibilities of job.

Communication:
The principal street of communication is Valley of Adige that from Lowland Padana brings in Austria and in southern Germany through Brennero; this valley is long that pass the principal railway lines (Verona-Trento-Bolzano-Brennero), the highway Verona Brennero and the government Verona Brennero.

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The Alto Adige Wine Story

Tired of hearing about Tuscany? One of the least talked about notable wine regions in Italy is Alto Adige. Here you’ll find some of the world’s best Pinot Grigio. In Alto Adige, Pinot Grigio is made in a refreshing and zesty style that will tickle your teeth. Besides white wine, the area also produces two unique red wine varieties that are worth mentioning.

Learn about Alto Adige wine; from their iconic Pinot Grigio to age-worthy red wines like Lagrein. Identify the major flavors of the region and know what to look for when you’re craving something Italian.

Alto Adige Wine: Home of Kickass Pinot Grigio

Schloss-Lebenberg-alto-adige-italian-pinot-grigio

Alto Adige is for those whose hearts are in the mountains. View of Schloss Lebenberg. source

Alto Adige Wine Region

Alto Adige Wine Map

courtesy Alto Adige Wines Positioned right below Austria at the tiptop of Italy, Alto Adige lies in a ‘Y’ shaped glacial valley. Before planes, this little valley used to be the main passage between Italy and the rest of Europe. Because of its position as a gateway to Italy, Alto Adige was the focal point of conquest from the ancient Romans to the Nazi regime. It became part of Italy in 1919 and there are up to three official languages: Italian, German and Ladin.

Learn how to read an Italian wine list

Vineyards in Alto Adige creep up the sides of glacial valleys in horizontal rows. The winery estates here are commonly called “Schloss” which is the German word for castle or chateau. Alto Adige is quite tiny at only 13,000 acres but the region varies enough to have 7 distinct growing sub-regions. The city of Bolzano is smack-dab in the center of Alto Adige and has some of the most amazing scenery.

BUYING ALTO ADIGE WINE?

When looking for a wine from Alto Adige, it will most likely be grouped in the store as a wine from “Trentino-Alto Adige.” This is because Alto-Adige is located just north of Trentino, a region known for sparkling wine, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. In Alto Adige, it’s also very common to see German names and words on the label. For instance, you may find a bottle of Weißburgunder instead of Pinot Bianco.
Want some recommendations for great valued Italian wine?

What Does Alto Adige Do Best?

Alto Adige Wine Statistics

Pinot Grigio & Pinot Bianco

The white pinots of Alto Adige account for over 20% of the total wine production and are a hallmark of the area. Both wines have a feint lemon and waxy peach aromas with slight honey and almond undertones. Alto Adige’s white Pinot Grigio and Pinot Bianco rival the best Austrian Grüner Veltliner and German Riesling.

What to Expect from Alto Adige Pinot Grigio

A wine from Alto Adige will have higher acidity and less fruit flavors than American Pinot Grigio. If you’re looking to buy one, expect to spend at least $14. The best wines start at $25 and keep your eyes peeled for Pinot Bianco – It’s worth a spin!

Examples of classic wines

Erste Neue Pinot Grigio

$15
This wine was recommended to us by the people at Guildsomm.com as an example of wine that’s true to its core. It’s a great example of classic Alto Adige Pinot Grigio.

Cantina Terlan “Vorberg” Pinot Bianco

$23
This Pinot Bianco shows off how rich and age-worthy Italian white wine can be. White Nectarine and saline finish

Other White Wines

Gewürztraminer is traditionally off-dry (meaning: slightly sweet) with aromatics of fresh leechie, honeycomb and ginger. Alto Adige is Gewürztraminer’s homeland and was recently found by Jancis Robinson to be the exact same grape variety at Traminer. It grows mostly in the most southern wine area called Bassa Atesina which is warmed by Lake Garda.

Müller Thurgau is Gewürztraminer’s lighter flowery friend; it has less alcohol and more citrus blossom aromas. You can find Müller Thurgau also growing in Bassa Atesina, but in the highest elevation vineyards – up to 4000 feet.

Vintage Wine Region Photo of Alto Adige

Women and men worked the harvest together in Alto Adige during the early 1900s

Unusual Red Wines from Alto Adige

Schiava You gotta try it

If you love a fruity light wine like Zinfandel then you should add Schiava to your repertoire. The wine is an explosion of strawberries, cotton candy with lemon candy tartness. If I were to compare it directly to Beaujolais, I’d say Schiava is what Beaujolais Nouveau wishes it were: light and fruity… always a good time.

New World Wine Lovers

Schiava doesn’t have the awkward earthy flavors that a lot of European wines have. It’s a great gateway drug to old world wines, but a quirky enough varietal for your wine geek friends.

Lagrein

A test of time, Lagrein is an ancient varietal that’s been mentioned as early as the 1500’s (yep, it’s older than Cabernet Sauvignon). With only about 1,100 acres in Alto Adige –and perhaps the world– Lagrein is relatively hard to find. Dark fruit and earthy pepper notes with relatively high tannin and acidity make Lagrein a great wine to cellar a long time. Don’t expect a rush of fruit, we find it tastes similar to French Syrah and Italian Barbera.

Buy the Book — Get the Course!

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