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This Week's Tasting

Classic Expressive Whites of Kellerei Terlan
May 15, 2019

Peter writes, "Okay, so sub-Alpine Alto Adige is part of Italy, but until 1918 it was Austrian. To this day both German and Italian are spoken there. The region also has a long, storied history of producing great wines, particularly whites."


Alto Adige

He continues,

 Kellerei Terlan akaCantina Terlanodates back to the 19thcentury. Today, they are known to be one of the best white wine producers in the world. Julia from Terlan was scheduled to be here but had to stay in Italy. so we will taste six of these with help from Nathaniel from their importer Banville, and local favorite BZ of United Liquors.

We will begin with the 2017 Pinot Grigio just to show that you can make a good Pinot Grigio. Then we will taste the 2017 Pinot Bianco, a more serious and slightly richer wine. Then comes the first blend, the 2017 Classico Alto Adige. This is basically the same blend of Pinot Bianco, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc as the Nova Domus we taste later. This will age well for many years.

One of the guiding missions of Terlan is to make whites that have a great capacity to age. They maintain an extensive library selection at the winery. The next three wines all have this capacity to age. The 2017 Sauvignon Blanc Winkl is a dramatic and expressive wine now and gets more complex and tertiary with age. Put a couple of bottles away for ten years. The 2015 Pinot Bianco Vorberg is a selection of some of the best Pinot bianco vineyards. This wine combines minerality and rich complexity that equals the best of White Burgundy. I would suggest you try this one when it is 20 years old. Last we will try the 2017 Nova Domus Riserva. Here we find pear, apple, citrus with an underlying tropical component. Each of these three wines gets fermentation and aging in large oak barrels. Even in today’s ridiculously high speed world, see if you can find your way to put a few bottles of these down for several years.


2017 Pinot Grigio: Multifaceted fruity bouquet with youthful freshness, balanced acidity and a mild finish. Very Good Plus 19.99; Mixed Case, 17.99; Case, 16.99

2017 Pinot Bianco: Powerful expression of terroir. Delicate and above all mineral. Very Good Plus 21; Mixed Case, 18.90; Case, 17.85

2017 Classico Alto Adige: Cardomom, white pepper, grapefruit Ripe tropical with apricot, fresh fennel and balanced finish. Very Good to Excellent 29.99; Mixed Case, 26.99; Case, 25.49

2018 Sauvignon Blanc Winkl: In musical terms this is the classic jazz of Sauvignon Blanc. Memorable Very Good to Excellent 35; Mixed Case, 31.5; Case, 29.75

2016 Pinot Bianco Vorberg: Rich, highly complex, impressive. Underscores the full potential of this variety. Excellent 45; Mixed Case, 40.5; Case, 38.25

2015 Nova Domus Riserva: Majestic, powerful, complex. Full bodied and multifaceted Excellent 68; Mixed Case, 61.2; Case, 57.80


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Please pass this on to any friends who are wine enthusiasts!


           - Peter Hemenway