A prima vista [at first sight] is an Italian saying that typically applies to love, or—in our case—a first encounter with an Italian wine and its maker. A trio of producers from Italy’s pristine Alto Adige region—Tobias Zingerle, Martin Hoffstätter and Ines Giovanett—were in town for a masterclass led by Tim Gaiser, MS at Epic Roasthouse. “Alto Adige is a four-dimensional region,” said Gaiser, who shed some light on the Adige Valley’s diverse terroirs—white volcanic pryazinic soils of the northeast, glacial soils or scree around Bolzano, calcareous clay of the cooler southeastern slopes and the crystalized porphyry rock found at Cantina Terlano.
Each producer addressed a flight of four like-variety wines that included current and older vintages: Zingerle, his own Kaltern Caldero Pinot Biancos and those of Cantina Terlano; Hoffstätter, his Gewürztraminer and those of Tramin; Giovanett’s Girlan Pinot Noir and examples from Castelfelder. Intensity, minerality and purity are hallmarks for these wines, with oak playing a secondary role. Gaiser remarked on the diversity of Pinot Noir styles as ranging from Volnay to Central Otago.
Read the column SFInsider june-2015