The province of Trentino forms the southern part of the Trentino-Alto Adige region in northern Italy and produces world-class wines. About an hour’s drive from Verona and surrounded by the majestic Dolomites, a UNESCO world heritage site, it is one of the most beautiful areas of the country.
Trentino is known for its pristine ski slopes, breathtaking hiking and biking trails and spectacular landscapes and is also one of the most dynamic and varied wine-growing areas in Italy. It produces high-quality terroir wines from international and regional grapes and one of the most famous fermented bottle wines in the country.
With 25,232 hectares of vineyards, the province accounts for 1.6% of the country’s vineyards. Despite its relatively small size, the United States is Trentino’s largest export market, accounting for 51% of the value of the region’s exports.
White grapes dominate the wine scene. At the top of the list is Pinot Grigio with a 34% share of total grape production, followed by Chardonnay with 26% and Müller-Thurgau with 10%. The other white varieties are Sauvignon, Pinot Bianco and Nociola. For the production of red wine, the main grape varieties are Teroldego, Merlot, Marzemino and Pinot Nero, followed by Schiava, Lagraine and Cabernet Sauvignon.
These varieties form the backbone of the region’s main name, Trentino Denominazione di Original Controllata (DOC). Thanks to the influence of the nearby mountains, Trentino wines are characterized by their freshness and finesse.
In the province there is also the name Trento DOC, which is entirely dedicated to the production of spark stacks by fermentation in the bottle. Fragrant, spicy and full of elegance, these wines are considered the first bottles of Metodo Classico in Italy. Its roots go back to the early 1900s, when the pioneer Giulio Ferrari recognized the extraordinary potential of the region for the production of sparkling wine and began cultivating Chardonnay.
Photo with thanks to the institute of Trento DOC
Today, the main grape varieties of this sparkling mountain are Chardonnay and Pinot Nero, although Pinot Bianco and Pinot Menier can also be used. Chardonnay gives fragrance and durability, while pinot nero brings structure and elegance.
Wines regulated by DOC since 1993, 57 producers of Metodo-Classico belong to the Istituto Trento DOC and use the collective brand Trentodoc. These wines are also determined by their unique growing area.
On the slopes of the low mountain range, at an altitude of 656 to 2952 metres above sea level, the pure mountain air, the alpine vineyards and the abundant sunshine provide warm days and cool nights during the growing season, which contributes to the optimum ripening of the grapes.
This perfect ripening process produces seductive aromas, strong flavours and high acidity. Although the mandatory maturation period varies from 15 months for the Brut, 24 months for the Millesimato and 36 months for the Riserva, almost all producers keep their wines much longer, even up to 10 years.
Currently, 12% of the vineyards in Trentino are certified organic. This region has recently become one of the leaders in Italy in the application of integrated farming methods. In order to protect the environment, most producers and wineries in Trentino have opted for this approach, which minimises the use of chemical treatments in their vineyards. In 2016, the Vini del Trentino Consortium started the certification process for the integrated production of grapes, which is regulated by the National Quality System for Integrated Production (SQNPI). In 2019, more than 90% of Trentino’s grape production was certified.
In its long history of quality wines, its recent achievements and its commitment to sustainable development, Trentino is proud to have awarded its region the title of Region of the Year. -Kerine O’Keefe