Alto Adige Wine Country 2010 Grape Harvest by liwenting


									                        Alto Adige Harvest 2010
       Optimal Quality Vintage from Unusual Growing Conditions

Bolzano, Italy, October 2010 — Alto Adige winemakers and growers are very pleased with the
2010 vintage. Grapes showed optimal quality, with slightly lower sugar content and slightly higher
acidity compared to 2009. Volumes are lower this year as compared to previous harvests, showing
a decrease between 10% - 25%, depending on the variety. In cellars in Alto Adige, young wines
from this harvest are showing typical flavor profiles, are well-balanced and full-bodied.

2010 Growing Season
The 2010 winter began with normal but very dry conditions. In February and March, average
temperatures were markedly lower than the average for previous years, delaying the start of the
growing season. April weather was similar to early summer, very sunny with little precipitation,
whereas May was cool and rainy. Persistent hot, dry weather in June and July stunted grape
growth. A long rainy period in August helped the grapes. The average August temperature was
lower than the annual average, and the particularly cool nights had a positive influence on
maturation and quality. Even the extreme temperature fluctuations in the first half of September
had a positive effect on maturation. The only source of concern for winemakers was the few rainy
days that occurred from time to time.

Well-Ripened, crunchy, Fruity Grapes
“We could not hope for better quality than we have in 2010,” commented a satisfied Thomas
Dorfmann, enologist of the Cantina Valle Isarco cooperative. Dorfmann’s only concern is the
limited quantity, which for some varieties decreased by 25%: The consolation for lower yields is the
excellent quality that, according to Dorfmann, is particularly true for Sylvaner, Müller Thurgau and
Riesling in the Isarco Valley this year.

“The grapes were slightly smaller this year, but fruitier, more intense in color, with good acidity and
succulent aromas,” remarked Stefan Kapfinger, enologist with the Cantina Meran Burggräfler
cooperative. He is particularly satisfied with the Gewürztraminer, “that really piqued our interest” as
well as the Pinot Blanc and the Chardonnay, “with mouth-watering fruit and above average
qualities.” Among the reds, the “fruity, elegant and smooth” Pinot Noir stands out. He believes that
the quality of the Schiava is also higher than usual.

Later Harvest Created Favorable Quality

After a difficult 2008 season characterized by a risk of fungal infestation and the ideal weather
conditions of 2009, 2010 did not present any particular challenges. Because of their diligence and
commitment to the vineyards, growers and winemakers were able to largely overcome the weather

Armin Dissertori, President of the Alto Adige Wine Consortium and President of the Cantina
Caldaro cooperative, praised the commitment of the winemakers. Dissertori is convinced that the
pursuit of quality clearly won out over the pursuit of quantity. “Careful thinning of the clusters
combined with the late start of the harvest (a week later than last year) had a positive impact on
grape quality,” he commented. Out of the ordinary weather conditions during actual harvesting
proved to be difficult in some respects. “This is further confirmation that the consortium system in
Alto Adige works well,” Dissertori further noted. “Apart from the decrease in quantity, 2010
presented all the requirements for a very good year with very typical wines.“

Josehpus Mayr, from the Unterganzner di Cardano estate and President of the Independent
Winegrowers of Alto Adige, said that he is quite satisfied with the vintage. “At the beginning,
vineyard conditions, affected by both dry and rainy periods, were not always favorable”. According
to Mayr, the young wines are surprising because of their alcohol content and concentration. The
fact that the quantities are lower cannot necessarily be interpreted as a negative aspect.
“Reduced growth improves quality, and the longevity of wines in vintages like these generally
increases,” he observed.

Enticing, Drinkable, Lively Wines

Martin Foradori, owner and winemaker of the J. Hofstätter estate and President of the Alto Adige
Wine Estates called 2010 “a vintage with ups and downs.” He mused, “it is natural and normal to
have differences between vintages. Nature sets the pace, even if we want every vintage to be
absolutely better than the one before it.” According to Foradori, 2010 wines are “enticing, drinkable
and lively, exactly how they should be. It’s a vintage that is suitable for every day but is special
enough for weekends and holidays – this is Martin Foradori’s image of the 2010 vintage.”


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