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03.08.2018

Blazing new trails

Alto Adige's wineries experiment with unconventional methods of bottle storage

Not all storage methods are the same: constant temperature, the correct humidity and the right air pressure are just a few of the elements that play a role in proper storage for maturation. Some wineries in Alto Adige, however, are taking steps into the unknown with special methods of bottle storage!

The mine at Schneeberg in Ridanna/Ridnaun at 2,000 metres elevation is very popular with Alto Adige’s wineries for maturation. In addition to wines from Elena Walch, bottles from the Cantina Tramin - in specific the Alto Adige Gewürztraminer called Epokale - are also stored here. Italy's highest mine offers optimal conditions for maturation: fine wines are kept at a constant temperature and humidity between 90% and 95% for several years.

An old military bunker in San Paolo/St. Pauls was converted into a storage site for maturation. According to the classic method, Cantina Produttori San Paolo winery’s Praeclarus Brut ferments and matures at 12°C for at least 48 months. Who would have thought that this remnant from World War II would be given a new lease on life? Here, the treasures of the winery are carefully matured and maintained.

Wine producers are not the only ones to break new ground in maturation. The Arunda Sparkling Wine Producer matures its bottles at 1,200 meters elevation, which has an effect on the taste. The natural temperature fluctuations cause a slower and more even ripening process, which lends the sparkling wine a special note. Bottles are stored for at least 24 months, whilst special cuvées can spend up to 60 months in the cellar.

The Röck winegrowing estate, which matures some of its Riesling and Veltliner wines in the Totensee lake at an altitude of 2,200 metres at the Villanderer Alm mountain pasture, is particularly keen to experiment. It’s an unusual idea with an uncertain outcome.

As you can see there are many ways to store wine for maturation, but it is important to find the right method for the respective wine. Regardless, one thing is certain: the next few years will be exciting!
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