Discover why wines from the Italian Alto Adige region are a cut above the rest, plus where to try them in Hong Kong…
Is it just us or does the process of deciding on a bottle of wine get more confusing by the day? The world of wine is rife with endless choices, which is both a blessing and a curse if you’re a vino novice. Most of the time, we end up settling for tried and tested favourites like a classic Tuscan Chianti or a light Burgundian Chardonnay, which are reliable, but hardly groundbreaking. But then we discovered wines from the Italian Alto Adige region, and it was a game changer…
Highly rated by critics, yet little known amongst the wider community, Alto Adige wines are a true hidden gem. Sure to impress your oenophile friends, bottles from here are world-renowned in quality and value. A win-win situation in our books!
Keep reading to find out what makes Alto Adige one of the most notable wine regions in Italy, the top Alto Adige bottles to try now, plus where you can sample Alto Adige wines in Hong Kong…
Where Is The Alto Adige Region?
Alto Adige is located in the north of Italy, right below Austria.
What Makes The Alto Adige Region So Good For Wine?
One word: climate. Here, Mediterranean charm meets Alpine freshness. It’s never too hot thanks to its northern positioning. At the same time, the warm air currents from Lake Garda and the Mediterranean ensure temperatures remain mild, whilst The Alps protect the region from the worst of the cold air masses blowing in from Austria. The result? Sunny days, warm soils, sufficient precipitation, cool nights and strong winds – the optimal wine growing climate. It’s no wonder 98% of the wine production area is DOC quality!
“In just a short period of time, Alto Adige has become Italy’s top white wine region. The requirements for this were the Alpine-Mediterranean climate, the quality of the soils, and the enviable locations of the vineyards. For its success, Alto Adige wine can thank these happy conditions, a generation of meticulous, diligent winegrowers, and the commitment of imaginative cooperatives.” – Ernesto Gentili and Fabio Rizzari, Wine Connoisseurs and Critics
What Kind Of Wines Does Alto Adige Produce?
Alto Adige is best known for its stellar white wine contributions, including Pinot Grigio, Gewürztraminer, Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc and Sauvignon Blanc. That being said, Alto Adige also produces a selection of notable red wines, made from native grapes Lagrein and Schiava.
What Are Some Must-Try Bottles Of Alto Adige Wine?
Pinot Grigio is the most planted grape variety planted in Alto Adige, embodying 11.9% of the total area of cultivation. This full-bodied white pairs fantastically with freshwater fishes and most of Italian dishes. Top bottles from Alto Adige include this bottle from Kettmeir, this 2019 option from St. Pauls and Nals Margreid’s Punggl Pinot Grigio.
With its delicate scent of rose petals, cloves, lychees, and other tropical fruits, this aromatic white is one of the most sought-after of Alto Adige’s wines. It’s the perfect companion to everything from vegetables to blue cheese, as well as a host of Asian and Chinese dishes too. Our favourite bottles include this affordable number from Cantina Tramin and St. Pauls’ 2019 option.
The fruity freshness of a Pinot Bianco makes it one of the white wine stars of Alto Adige. Its elegant scent of apples, pears and lemons, along with a tone of hay flowers and hazelnut make it a versatile pick, pairing especially well with dishes involving seafood and shellfish. Try this bottle from St Michael Eppan to whet your palate, or this 2018 option from Alois Lageder Haberle.
Where Can I Try Alto Adige Wines In Hong Kong?
This month, you can find Alto Adige wines in a host of the city’s top dining destinations. Our top picks include:
Pair your wine of choice with elevated dim sum bites. Request a table on the alfresco terrace to make the most of Hong Kong’s beautiful weather right now!
Perched on the 101st floor of the ICC, your Alto Adige wine experience here comes complete with stunning views and exceptional Italian fine dining cuisine.
Italian wines with authentic Japanese comfort eats? Yes, it works. A testament to the versatility of Alto Adige wines, head down to this authentic Causeway Bay izakaya to see for yourself.
Chef Umberto Bombana’s one Michelin-starred Octavium is the perfect setting for a glass of Alto Adige wine. Look forward to a dining experience to remember.
Michelin-starred beef offers the ideal opportunity to sample an Alto Adige red.
Other participating restaurants include Osteria Ristorante Italiano, Gaia Ristorante, Divino Patio, 121BC, Le Moment, Amelia and Golden Bull French Vietnamese Cuisine.
Consorzio Alto Adige Wines, www.altoadigewines.com
Brought to you in partnership with Consorzio Alto Adige Wines.
All images courtesy of Consorzio Alto Adige Wines.