Founded by Joseph Hofstätter a century ago, the estate comprises extensive vineyards with five historic manor houses located on either sides of the Adige Valley. The most important of these is Barthenau, home of the famous Vigna S. Urbano Pinot Nero- a result of Paolo Foradori’s recognition of the estate’s potential for world-class Pinot Noir. Today, Joseph’s grand nephew, Martin Foradori-Hofstätter passionately maintains a delicate balance between tradition and innovation, producing wines of exceptional character and typicity.
J. Hofstätter produces nearly exclusively varietal wines that express the unique character of the local grape varieties of South Tyrol (Südtirol-Alto Adige). The foundation of the assortment is the “Classic” red and white wine series. Specially selected grapes are reserved for the “Selection” wines. At the peak of the assortment are the “Single-Vineyard” wines that stem from historic vineyard parcels. Included among these are three great growths that are produced only in extraordinary vintages.
PRIVILEGED BY NATURE
Alpine fortresses, castles, and aristocratic residences crowning gentle peaks with rugged cliffs in the background capture attention as eyes sweep over the lush, green Adige Valley landscape.
Massive prehistoric glaciers dug a broad gorge in the porphyry massif between the Ortler Alps and the Dolomites and created the Adige River and Lake Caldaro, which is fed by groundwater. Loam formed on the flanks of the gorge, rubble collected at the slope foot, and the valley floor filled with metre high alluvial soil. The geological conditions created thousands of years ago continue to determine the cultural landscape of today. Grape vines grow best on the loose, rocky slopes while fruit orchards thrive on the flat valley floors.
BOTH SIDES OF THE RIVER VALLEY
The J. Hofstätter estate owns several farmsteads, including five historic aristocratic “Ansitze”, aristocratic residences typical for South Tyrol. These farmsteads are located on both the east and west sides of the Adige River, which is unique for this region.
The wines carry the names of their respective farmsteads: Kolbenhof, Barthenau with Yngram, Steinraffler, and Oberkerschbaum. The vines root on high plateaus and slopes at altitudes ranging between 250 and 800 metres (820-2625 feet) where they enjoy ideal growing conditions. Vines benefit from good aeration – cool fall winds from the mountains or warm breezes from the south according to the time of day. Whether grapes ripen in the morning or evening sun depends on exposition and which valley side. There could not be more fascinating or diverse microclimates. Soils are equally varied. Depending on site location, soils can be gravelly and sandy with calcareous components or of volcanic origins. The demanding Gewürztraminer variety thrives here as does sensitive Pinot Noir – a rarity at this latitude.