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Trollinger produces a delicate, pale red, easy-drinking wine. Trollinger wines do not require ageing and should be drunk young. The variety was named after its South Tyrolean origins as a corruption of “Tirolinger” which is what the wine was called when it spread to southern Germany. In its homeland, however, it is known as Vernatsch or Schiava Grossa, while English-speaking countries tend to use the name Black Hamburg.

Fresh, easy-drinking Trollinger wines

The Trollinger grape variety has a relatively high level of acidity. However, despite the marked acidity, the wines are easily digestible as it gives them a pleasantly fresh expression. Particularly on hot days and warm summer evenings, fans prefer a chilled glass of Trollinger over other summer wines such as rosé because they like its slightly prickly fizz.
The blue-black, thin-skinned grapes yield juicy, full-bodied wines. Silky tannins round off the overall impression. Wild cherries dominate its aroma. Pale red in the glass, the wine unfolds a floral bouquet occasionally accompanied by light notes of nutmeg.
Trollinger is mainly enjoyed as an easy-drinking table wine. As it has very little natural sugar, winemakers rarely make premium wines with this variety. Blends with the red wine variety Lemberger are popular in Germany. These also go by the name of Blaufränkisch, depending on which of the two varieties makes up the greater proportion. German winemakers also like to vinify it as a pale, pink-shimmering rosé called “Weissherbst”.
As a down-to-earth wine with an assertive personality, it goes very well with hearty main courses or light meals involving bread with meat and cheese. Wine made from Trollinger does not require any cellaring, it is made to be drunk immediately. It develops its full potential already as a young wine so little time should pass between vinification and drinking.

Cultivation of Trollinger grapes

The Trollinger vine has medium-sized cylindrical bunches of grapes. The slightly oval berries hang on these relatively loosely so sunlight reaches them easily. The dark-blue, thin-skinned berries usually ripen late in the season. As a rule of thumb, vintners reckon on 20 days after Chasselas. Because of this long growth cycle, Trollinger grapes can only ripen fully in southern climes.
Trollinger prefers shell limestone and Keuper soils. Winegrowers achieve the best results when the soils are deep and nutrient-rich. The vineyard should receive a lot of precipitation between the blossoming period and grape ripening.
The Trollinger variety is resistant to frost, but is susceptible to both powdery and downy mildew. The vigorous vines produce very high yields, which can impact quality. Winegrowers must invest considerable effort in vine training to keep growth in check. At 70 to 75 Oechsle, the must weight is usually within the average range.

The best growing areas for Trollinger

Trollinger very probably originated in what is now South Tyrol and was brought across the Alps by the Romans to southern Germany, from where it gradually spread out. The Württemberg area emerged as the predominant German growing region for this grape variety in the 17th century. South Tyrol and the German winegrowing region of Württemberg are still the world’s leading producers of Trollinger wine today. The mild climate in these two regions allows the late-ripening berries to develop fully.
98% of German plantings of this grape are in Württemberg. Elsewhere only the Baden wine region has several vineyards planted to Trollinger. In Italy, the grape is mainly grown in the Trentino-South Tyrol and Lombardy wine regions. There it is also used in several varietally pure DOC wines, but it is also frequently blended with other varieties from the Schiava family.
Discover refreshing, easy-drinking Trollinger from Germany and Italy. Whether as a spritzy summer wine or as a gift – it is an ideal choice. Order a bottle or two in Mondovino’s online shop or grab one of these popular red wines in your nearest Coop store.
pale red
juicy, powerful, fresh, flowery
wild cherries, light nutmeg notes
high acidity

Trollinger wines