Professional Ratings: 88 Wine Spectator, 88 The Wine Advocate
Region: Trentino-Alto Adige, Italy
Varietal: Pinot Gris/Grigio
Item no. 88000
"It is hard to find a better Pinot Grigio than this 2005 Pinot Grigio delle Venezie IGT. Fermented and aged in stainless steel for four months, it offers a fragrant perfume of candied citrus, orange rind, and lemon butter, medium body, lovely freshness as well as purity, and a surprisingly persistent finish."-- Robert Parker
Made from 100% Pinot Grigio fermented in stainless steel. The wine is released in the spring following harvest. Intense in color with subtle copper highlights. It has a fruity perfume that is especially reminiscent of pear. Fresh fruit comes through on the palate. Light and refreshing with balanced acidity.
Founded in 1848, the Tiefenbrunner Castel Turmhof Winery owes its name to the ancient castle that hosts the Tiefenbrunner family. The winery is located in Entiklar, a hamlet belonging to the town of Kurtatsch in the South Tyrolean province of Bozen, embedded in the Italian Alps.
Herbert Tiefenbrunner and his son, Christof, are expert winemakers: maintaining complete control over all operations, from the harvest through the winemaking process. The estate produces about 700,000 bottles per year, 70% of them contain zesty whites, the remaining 30% are elegant reds. Tiefenbrunner's vineyards are located along the Südtyroler Weinstrasse, the Wine Route of South Tyrol, in one of the most beautiful wine growing areas in Alto Adige.
The vines are grown mostly on the mountain slopes around the Turmhof Castle, but some are also located in the flatter areas of the valley. The southward-facing slopes and their loamy, chalk rich soils represent the best environment for producing high quality wines. The Mediterranean climate, characterized by a moderate rainfall, and the cooling evening winds, allow for a substantial difference between day and night temperatures, providing the ideal conditions for perfect grape ripening.
The philosophy of the Tiefenbrunner family is to relentlessly improve the grape quality and to highlight the varietal character of each wine.
Learn More About Pinot Gris/Grigio
Pinot Gris/Grigio (PEE-noh gree/GREE-jee-oh) While Pinot Grigio is in fact the same grape as Pinot Gris (just the Italian take on it), the differences of wine they create can be immense. Pinot Gris' most popular and successful region is Alsace, France, an area of the country that actually puts the name of the grape on the label. Pinot Grigio is the Italian version of the grape, known for its light, crisp acidity. But wines from other regions usually term their wine Pinot Gris or Grigio based on the wine's flavor profile.
Notable Facts Pinot Gris from Alsace creates rich, stone fruit-laden wines. They are perfumed and aromatic, and typically dry. It has round body and medium acidity. Take the grape a bit south to Italy, and it creates a very crisp, high-acid, citrus noted wine. Both are flavorful, but wine named Pinot Gris typically provides more body and rounder fruits while Pinot Grigio gives lighter-bodied, citrus fruits. Oregon and California are also growing the grape, Oregon having success with a more Alsacian style and California producing both. Winemakers often call the wine by the style they wish to replicate - for Italian style, look for Pinot Grigio, for the Alsacian style, look for Pinot Gris. In Alsace, Pinot Gris can also makes wine with some residual sugar. It's capable of creating delicious dessert wines in the region.
Summing it up Successful Sites: Alsace, Italy, Oregon, California
Common Descriptors: peach, pear, floral, citrus
Learn More About Trentino-Alto Adige, Italy
(tren-TEE-noe ahl-toe ah-DEE-jay)
The area consists of the regions Trentino and Alto Adige, neighbors in Northeast Italy, and is part of the Tre-Venezie trifecta. The northernmost region of Italy is fairly hilly due its closeness to the the Alps, and many vines in Trentino are terraced along the hillsides for ideal sunlight benefits. Alto Adige, in turn, has more vines on the valley floors, but enjoys warmer summers. White and sparkling are the name of the game here in quality and exports, although oddly enough, more red wine is produced. The majority of this red wine is drunk locally and in neighboring countries.
Reds are likely to be Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, along with a few local varieties, most notably Schiaval. The white grapes are Pinot Bianco, Pinot Grigio, Traminer and Chardonnay. Chardonnay is the most-planted and most revered, while Traminer hails from Austria and has an amazingly light body, but is also intensely floral and delicious. Pinot Bianco and Pinot Grigio are the international players that make lively whites of good value. The sweet spot of Trentino Alto-Adige is Vino Santo- a wine not to be confused with Tuscany's Vin Santo. Vino Santo (which means holy wine) is a sweet wine of the area made from dried grapes. Not found as much as Vin Santo, but still a treat.