Great reds and astonishing whites
A hot summer yields a “gigantic red wine vintage” and extraordinary whites
The wine experts of Alto Adige agree: 2022 will be a great vintage for full-bodied red wines in particular, which benefited from the exceptionally high temperatures last summer. But white wines, too, are doing surprisingly well in all areas of cultivation, turning out unusually powerful but still fresh and fruity.
Record temperatures were recorded as early as May 2022, causing fast and early blossoming even at higher altitudes. And with the summer months of June, July, and August being equally hot and dry, the head start in vegetation kept up, leading to harvesting starting two or even three weeks earlier than the usual yearly average in most areas. The viticultural year began with a relatively late budding season, but due to the hot weather, it ended up being a very early year after all.
Red wines benefit more than white ones from heat, drought, and the opportunity for the grapes to ripen to ideal maturity. Particularly the Merlot and Cabernet varieties present an above-average vintage. The 2022 Pinot Noir, for example, promises to become a vigorous, fruity, highly interesting wine, and he is expecting great things from the Lagrein, Merlot, and Cabernet varieties, too. They are intense in color, dense, compact, large, and long. On top of that, beautiful, mature tannins lend them subtlety. The only problem child, at least at first, was the Schiava (Vernatsch) variety. It had little coloring and we were worried it would not develop much fruit, but we were disabused of that notion: 2022 is a very good vintage for Schiava and Santa Maddalena.
The white varieties have good sugar values, below-average acidity values and were very healthy harvests. The most interesting development can be observed in Chardonnay and Pinot Grigio. Gewürztraminer is very fruity and promises to be an exciting vintage, and also Sauvignon surprised the experts. Müller-Thurgau shows all the hallmarks of becoming a storybook vintage.
© Consorzio Alto Adige Wines