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  • Writer's picturewijnhuiswest

The Hidden Wine Gems of Northern Italy

Updated: Feb 23

One of the many things that make Italy so fascinating as a wine country is the incredible diversity of grape varieties. The most famous international varieties are found almost everywhere in the country, but Italy also has some varieties that are not found in any other country. In fact, some grape varieties are only found in one small region within Italy. Let's introduce you to one of our favorites.

Wines of the Teroldego grape made by alto Adige wine maker De Vescovi Ulzbach

One of those rare  grape varieties is Teroldego. This blue grape is only found in Trentino in the north of the country. Although the grape was already known in Roman antiquity, it never spread beyond its local home base. The stony and boulder-strewn banks of the Noce and Adige rivers and the vast Campo Rotaliano plain with granite and slate soil are the ideal growing soil for the Teroldego grape variety.

At the end of 2005, scientists achieved some groundbreaking research results on the origins of the Teroldego grape variety. It appears that Teroldego is genetically related to Syrah. Another important finding of the researchers was that the Teroldego grape, among others, gave rise to both the Marzemino and the Lagrein grape varieties.

Teroldego has medium sized berries but always produces deeply colored red wines. The wine styles range from lively, more fruit forward wines with soft ripe tannins to more powerful wines in which perfect harmony is achieved between the fruit and aromas like coffee, dark chocolate and slight tar like notes. The best wines are always gems of aromatic complexity with a special elegance.

In 1971, the cradle of Teroldego was awarded its own DOC: DOC Teroldego Rotaliano. According to this DOC, which confirmed the consistent quality of these wines, Teroldego more than holds its own as a varietal wine and is therefore always vinified solo. Teroldego is also permitted as a blending grape in other DOCs such as Casteller DOC and Trentino Sorni DOC.

The Teroldego has gotten more popular in recent years and as far as we are concerned, Winemaker De Vescovi Ulzbach has made a major contribution to this. The Classico, Vigilius and their top cuvée Le Fron are all made from 100% Teroldego and, in our opinion, sublime expressions of the grape's potential. Up to you guys to discover this beauty on your wine adventure. The De Vescovi Ulzbach Classico has an original bouquet with a lot of herbal accents like pinewood, green pepper and rosemary. A full taste with a lot of fruit. Especially cherries and black berries, followed by plums and figs. Try this little gem with a big plate of the classic Dutch dish Boerenkool Stamppot; a classico meets a classic.

Like to now more about De Vescovi Ulzbach and their family history go check out their website


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