“Help, which wine goes with my artichoke carpaccio?”

The ideal wine waiter – wine & helpful descriptions: fine fare & the best wine advice.
Wine waiters are normally elegant, helpful and competent. A bad wine waiter can be recognised by the fact that he will stick rigidly to his orthodox opinion and will not budge. Let’s take any artichoke dish as an example: if you want a Weissburgunder (Pinot Bianco) or a Sauvignon, a stubborn wine waiter will always insist that you have to have a Chardonnay. Because – he will say – you need a white wine with enormous structure, power and body to pair with the strong taste of the artichoke. But you should stand your ground and insist upon a Sauvignon or Weissburgunder.
 
 
The Vinum Hotel wine bulletin for June is thus dedicated to all of South Tyrol’s intelligent, unobtrusive, friendly and competent wine waiters and waitresses! At the Vinum Hotels of South Tyrol expert wine advice is a fundamental part of the holiday programme. Even the oddest of wine wishes should be met by an amenable wine service – for example if the guest prefers a South Tyrolean Sauvignon or Weissburgunder with the above-mentioned artichoke dish. Structure? Power? Body? The “St. Valentin” Weissburgunder from the St. Michael winery, the “Lafoa” Sauvignon from Schreckbichl, the “Vorberg” Weissburgunder from the Terlan winery and the Gumphof estate’s Sauvignon are just a few fine examples that can boast such qualities.

We can expect our favourite wine waiter to introduce us wine novices to the great unknown of the wine world in just as friendly a manner as he would give professional advice to a wine connoisseur who has come from afar in order to get to know South Tyrol’s finest wines on their home turf.

So, which wine goes with which food? As guests of one of South Tyrol’s Vinum Hotels we are pleased to ask the competent house sommelier for friendly advice – we can establish the price range and we will at once be amazed at just how many excellent and inexpensive wines are to be had in South Tyrol! We welcome a few basic recommendations from the wine waiter or wine waitress: light, dry white wines with starters – sometimes no wine at all with soup or salad! Wine does not go well with the acid nature of salad dressing. For fish and seafood, as with starters, choose light, dry, fresh white wines. Serve a fuller-bodied wine with sea fish or seafood: a late-vintage Sylvaner, a Pinot Grigio from the Unterland, a Sauvignon matured in oak barrels such as the “Quarz” from Terlan. For dishes with light meat, choose full dry white wines or light, elegant red wines – the best local representative is the Vernatsch in all its varieties and locations, from the light Kalterer See or the charmingly acerbic wine from Girlan, to the baroque and fruity St. Magdalener. For dark meats, try an elegant, delicate Blauburgunder (Pinot Nero) or a full-bodied, strong red wine such as Lagrein; or a heavy red such as a Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, or indeed the long-lasting cuvées made from the Cabernet and Merlot varieties, the South Tyrolean “Bordeaux types”.

Naturally these are only suggestions and you are free to make up your own mind. The important thing is that guests at each of South Tyrol’s Vinum Hotels, apart from sampling the expert tasting sessions, will learn the art of enjoying wine! Santé! Cheers! Prosit!
 
 
The Vinum Hotel wine story for July:

Lagrein Kretzer, rosy Blauburgunder (Pinot Noir), Sekt Rosé – the ideal South Tyrolean sparkling wines for the hottest days of the year! Worldwide interest in rosé wines has significantly grown in recent years. Here too there are the first signs that a few wineries are taking Lagrein from good locations for rosé, bottling rosy Blauburgunder and using the traditional champagne method to produce high-quality sparkling rosé wine for discerning wine lovers. In the bars of South Tyrol’s Vinum Hotels, the discussion about the trend towards pale-red wines has now begun!