"Strong women in the vineyard,
the cellar and at the helm"

Courageous and visionary South Tyrolean women in wine
Inspired by the Italian "Donne del Vino" which promotes the knowledge and culture of wine and the leading role played by women in the Italian winemaking industry, there are also energetic women in the traditionally male-dominated South Tyrolean wine scene, who have stirred up, enriched & qualitatively advanced the wine industry with creativity and vigour.

The pioneer in this respect was certainly the Tramin-based yet cosmopolitan Elena Walch, who has been regularly presenting first-class wines at her eponymous estate for over three decades, and who also causes quite a commotion at international wine fairs.
The patriarchy ends with Werner Walch and a matriarchy begins on the Walch Wine Estate in Tramin. Werner left management of the winery to his wife Leni-Elena Schenk, who radically restructured the renowned, but rather ponderous, old-fashioned business.

The most important change included: the large range of varieties of inexpensive wines was united under the well-established name of "Wilhelm Walch” whilst the quintessence from the best wine locations was bottled under the new label "Elena Walch".

The rest is for the most part common knowledge: Leni/Elena Walch has brought a breath of fresh air to the male-dominated wine scene of South Tyrol over the last 30 years, successfully joined the "Donne del Vino" giving birth to new ideas and last but not least has delighted wine aficionados with rare wines: from the high-priced white blend "Beyond the Clouds" to the Gewürztraminer "Kastelaz" (regularly awarded "3 bicchieri " by Gambero Rosso), to surprising Pinot Noirs, Merlots and Lagreins.

The matriarchal future of the Walch family is secured, as it were, because Werner & Leni/Elena don't have a son, but do have two daughters: Julia (30) and Karoline (29) took over directorship of the winery from their mother Elena some five years ago. Karoline looks after the main market in Italy, as well as Canada and the USA - Julia takes care of the rest - more than three dozen countries to which "Wilhelm Walch" & "Elena Walch" wines are exported.

Fine, elegant, velvety, soft - rarely has a wine been so strongly imbued with feminine attributes as the St. Magdalener. In autumn, three generations of strong women vintners from the St. Magdalener Schutzkonsortium (Consortium for the Protection of Wine Production in St. Magdalena) took the opportunity "to dedicate ourselves completely to the female perspective regarding this typical Bolzano wine": Margareth Pfeifer (Pfannenstielhof), Judith Rottensteiner (Hans Rottensteiner Winery), Kathrin Werth (Muri-Gries Wine Estate | Monastery Cellar) told the international press in spectacular interviews from a couch in the middle of the Bolzano wine hills, about life and work with one of the most historic South Tyrolean wines on its path to modernity.

Gertrud Vogel (supplier, Rottensteiner Winery), born in Switzerland but with close ties to South Tyrol, has managed Premstallerhof for 19 years, where she works in accordance with biodynamic approaches: "I've learned to work the land myself, which gives me so much joy because I love farming and being in touch with nature".

Maria Romaner (Gleifnerhof) is an example of a small but significant revolution: as the youngest of three sisters, in 2018 she decided to continue running her parents' farm. "I grew up in the vineyards of St. Magdalena and learned how to work the vines from my father. I inherited a love of wine. Today I feel the responsibility of sustaining the great work of our forefathers for future generations".

The Vinum Hotels South Tyrol December Wine Letter is dedicated to the pioneering work of South Tyrolean women winemakers and oenologists! They work as vintners and in the cellar, as oenologists, sommeliers, experts and marketing strategists contributing to the success of the South Tyrolean wine industry. This applies to sales in this country as well as on an international scale.

The woman is deemed the soul of farm and farmhouse. The role women play in the wine industry has long since evolved even in South Tyrol.
The Vinum Hotel January Wine Letter
"Velvety blue skies, heady wine, sweet sensuality" - long-lasting South Tyrolean reds from the best locations

Grands Crus are the best locations. The term "grand cru" (French: literally "large growth") of course does not automatically mean that the best wine comes from them. Needless to say, it depends very much on the working methods and commitment of the respective winegrowers and cellar masters.

The wine growing areas of South Tyrol have both: exposed terraced vineyards, steep sloping hills, wind, warm days, cool nights - and cellar masters who spent arduous years of training at the best wine schools - San Michele Insitute, Klosterneuburg, Geisenheim, Montpellier and Veitshöchheim. Ideal conditions for long-lasting red wines!

The Vinum Hotels South Tyrol January Wine Letter is dedicated to South Tyrolean Red Wine-Crus!

Weingut & Genusshotel Spitalerhof

Chiusa -
Cultivation zone Valle Isarco (Information)