"Gunter Kerschbaumer is an unusually talented young man who makes some of Italy's best white wines. Unbelievably good sylvaner, Muller-Thurgau and kerner arise from splendidly situated vineyards at close to 700 meters above sea level. These are wines that will put to rest any preconceived notions you may have on those grapes. His riesling is quickly becoming one of the best Italian examples of this variety as well." -- International Wine Cellar
Acquired and managed by the Kerschbaumer family since 1940, the Kofererhof estate has existed in southern Tyrol, a region that is as Austrian in spirit as it is Italian, for over 850 years. In 1995, the winery started to bottle its own wines after having sold its fruit to local wineries for years. Kofererhof's tiny 5 hectares of vines are located at the base of the Dolomite mountains between 700 and 800 meters above sea level. At this high altitude, the variation in temperatures from day to night is ideal, and the carefully tended, high-density vineyards yield intensely fragrant, concentrated and well-balanced wines. All grapes are harvested by hand, and attention to detail is paramount in this limited production winery. Farming practices are currently of low environmental impact but will become fully organic in the near future. Indigenous yeasts are used, except in the rare instance of a particularly challenging vintage. All wines are fermented and aged in temperature-controlled tanks with the exception of the Pinot Grigio, which is partially aged in large casks of Acacia wood. Total production for the estate is only around 3,500 cases of wine per year! The quality of these wines raises the bar for all whites from Alto Adige.
Vineyard Practices: Kofererhof is a practicing organic winery. Integrated insect and disease control is followed. The Alto Adige region supports the growers with consultants and technical staff for the monitoring of insects and diseases. The region frowns on the use of harmful products as the vineyards are located near villages and towns. To curb fungus, growers use sulfur and copper-based products. Only organic fertilizers and manure are used and cover crops between the rows of vines add additional nutrients (in the new vineyards low growing crops are sown). When needed, the soil is tilled with manure and cut up plant substance. Very low doses of added SO2 in the wines help preserve them.