The picturesque village of Torbole lies on the north-eastern shore of Lake Garda. Here, the lake and landscape still have quite an alpine feel.

The picturesque village of Torbole lies on the north-eastern shore of Lake Garda. Here, the lake and landscape still have quite an alpine feel.
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Wine from the lake: the best from the Lake Garda Trophy 2024

Italy
Wine Inspiration

Lake Garda is the largest lake in Italy and a tourist magnet for good reason. Great wines also grow around the lake, in all three regions of Trentino, Veneto and Lombardy. We took a look around on site.

The world of wine around Lake Garda is diverse; with the Nosiola grape, for example, Trentino has its own independent variety. Traditionally, Vino Santo is made from it, a deliciously sweet straw wine, which can also be enjoyed in its dry version. The most famous red wine on the lake is Bardolino. It is made from Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara – and therefore from the same varieties as Valpolicella. Due to the different soils however, the wine here is different, lighter and juicier. Since 2018, the name Bardolino Cru has been used for wines from clearly defined vineyards, of which there are three: Montebaldo in the north, La Rocca around Bardolino and Lazise and Sommacampagna in the south.

The cultivation area for the white Custoza, which is made from Garganega, Trebbianello, Trebbiano and Fernanda, is almost geographically identical. Further to the southwest lies the realm of Lugana. The basis for this wine is the local Turbiana grape. The cool clay soils near the lake give this sought-after white wine tension and juicy fruit. The local Groppello grape is widespread on the south-west bank, which belongs to Lombardy. It produces full-bodied red wines and is often processed into rosé.

The winning wine of our Lake Garda Trophy is a Lugana. The Ca'Lojera winery, run by the Tiraboschi family, is located in Sirmione, close to the lakeshore. The Lugana Superiore 2020 impressed us with its complexity.

Bardolino had been rather quiet for a long time. Instead of producing dense, heavy wines, winegrowers today are increasingly emphasising its fruitiness and finesse. The Vigna Morlongo Montebaldo Bardolino from Vigneti Villabella has achieved this particularly well. It takes second place.

In third place comes a white wine from Custoza. The Cantina di Custoza has merged with two other winegrowers' cooperatives and now trades under the name Cantine di Verona. Their top Custoza is the Brolo dei Giusti. Often a little too wood-heavy in previous years, these teething troubles now seem to have been resolved.

SEE THE WHOLE TASTING

Bright, rich straw yellow with clear green nuances. Finely drawn nose with notes of grapefruit, flint and sage. Flourishes on the palate, lots of ripe fruit, sour peach and apricot, lingers for a long time.
Lugana, Italy
Bright, light golden yellow with a green shimmer. Complex nose, apricot and pineapple, fine beeswax in the background. Develops with a lot of tension, multi-layered, unfolds with vivid yellow fruit, firm drive and a long finish.

Area profile


The area
Wine is grown on the shores of all three regions that share Lake Garda. The most important wine designations are: Trentino Nosiola DOC, Bardolino and Chiaretto di Bardolino DOC, Custoza DOC, Lugana DOC and Valtenesì DOC.

The varieties
In addition to the local white Nosiola grape, a lot of Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio and Pinot Noir are grown in Trentino. In the white wine regions on the south bank, the Garganega, Trebbianello, Trebbiano and Ferdinanda varieties are predominant for Custoza, while Lugana comes from Turbiana. Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara are used for Bardolino, while Groppello is the dominant red wine variety on the south-western shore, which is also made into rosé.

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Othmar Kiem
Othmar Kiem
Chefredakteur Falstaff Italien
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