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Tramin / Alto Adige, Italy

Martin Foradori Hofstätter represents the fifth generation of winemakers guiding the legacy of J. Hoffstätter Winery. With his wife Beatrix, he has modernized and expanded the winery while continuing its traditional focus on terroir and single vineyard wines.

Centered in the charming and historic village of Tramin, the family business is still run from the 16th century building that once housed the “Schwartzer Adler” inn and wine cellar of founders Josef and Maria Hofstätter. Subsequent generations expanded the winery with acquisitions of additional farmsteads on both sides of the river valley, and first established the tradition of vinifying and bottling wines from single named vineyards.

Each of J. Hofstätter’s “Vigna” wines are single vineyard bottlings made of varietals particularly suited to each site. The mountainside Kolbenhof vineyard above Tramin has grown Gewürztraminer since the 18th century. Lower down the slope, the warmer Steinraffler vineyard’s location and soils are ideal for nurturing the native Lagrein grape. Opposite Tramin in the eastern flanks of the valley, the Mazon vineyard sites were among the first in Südtirol to cultivate the Pinot Noir grape, beginning at the end of the 19th century. And at Oberkerschbaum, south of Mazon, Sauvignon Blanc thrives on south-facing slopes at an altitude of nearly 800 meters.

Martin and Beatrix have built on this tradition, having acquired additional select vineyards as far away as Germany’s Mosel and closer to home in neighboring Trento. A particularly heroic site, the Maso Michei vineyard sits at 850 meters in a secluded mountainous area of southern Trentino, yielding complex Pinot Noir and Müller Thurgau with characteristic minerality.

Even as the fifth generation guides the legacy of J. Hoffstätter, the next generation is preparing. Says Martin, “Our family has always shaped the estate, and is equally shaped by the winery. Our three children are growing up right in the middle of the busy everyday life of the family business. After training, studies and work experience, they want to help shape the future of the winery”.

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