Fragrant, savory and loaded with elegance, bottle-fermented wines from the mountainous Trentino province in northern Italy have long been the sparkling wines of choice for Italians.
Part of the success behind these stunning sparklers— which are regulated under the Trento D.O.C. denomination and known by their collective trademark Trentodoc—is their unique growing area, located on mid-mountain slopes surrounded by the soaring, breathtakingly beautiful Dolomites, a Unesco World Heritage Site. Situated between 200 and 800 meters (656–2,635 feet) above sea level, the combination of pristine mountain air, high altitude vineyards and plenty of sunlight generate hot days and cool nights during the growing season, which encourage perfect grape ripening. This ideal maturation generates enticing aromas, pronounced flavors and bright acidity.
While the extraordinary growing conditions are fundamental, producer experience is also crucial. Trentino has a long history of making bottle fermented sparkling wines—known in Italy as Metodo Classico. Trentodoc, the first Metodo Classico D.O.C. wine in Italy and one of the first worldwide, traces its roots back to the early 1900s, when pioneer Giulio Ferrari realized the area’s extraordinary potential for sparkling wine production. Then, as today, the main grapes behind the effervescent wines hailing from the vineyards around the city of Trento are Chardonnay and Pinot Nero. Chardonnay lends Trentodoc their fragrance and longevity while Pinot Nero provides structure and finesse.
Quality has always been paramount in Trentino, and Trentodoc’s 48 producers still harvest by hand. Quality remains the focus in the cellars too. Once the base wine has been produced, the second fermentation takes place in the bottle, followed by long aging on the lees ranging from 15 months for Brut, 24 months for Millesimato and 36 months for Riserva. While these are the mandatory minimum aging periods, nearly all producers age their wines for far longer, sometimes up to ten years, allowing Trentodoc to develop remarkable complexity.
Thanks to Trentodoc’s elegance and complexity, it makes an excellent aperitif. With the exception of desserts, it also pairs beautifully with most food: from simple appetizers to even the most elaborate dishes.
Look for the Trentodoc logo that guarantees you’re buying Italy’s authentic mountain sparkler.
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