The Haas family has been growing grapes in Montagna in the province of Bolzano in the Alto Adige for generations. However, it is only with Franz, the current proprietor, that they have begun to produce and bottle quality wines. Franz studied at Geisenheim before working as a broker of Italian wines into the German market. After several years, he took over the running of the family business. Franz Haas goes to tremendous lengths to grow good grapes and then strives to preserve the flavours of the fruit during winemaking. As a result, the wines that he produces are infused with great character and show a rare purity and balance on the palate.
The climate here is more continental than Mediterranean, with very hot summers and quite cold winters, as the weather is not moderated by any nearby water. In the summer, Bolzano is one of the hottest cities in Italy, despite being only 70 kilometres from the Austrian border, as the heat is trapped in the mountainous valley. The vines from the four vineyards are all located in the municipalities of Montagna, Egna, Aldino and Bressanone at altitudes ranging between 350 - 800 metres above sea level. The soils are quite different from one another in their composition – a mixture of dolomitic, porphyric, sandy and marly, with south-western exposures. The grape varieties are harvested separately as they ripen at different times.
2016 was one of the most promising harvests in the last few years. After a little rainfall in spring and summer, autumn had perfect weather conditions to keep fruit disease free and allow for optimal ripening. Cooler night-time temperatures resulted in wines with very good acidity and body. The grapes for `Schweizer` Manna 2016 were picked from early September till the end of October.
Each variety was vinified separately - the Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc were fermented in oak barriques while the Riesling, Gewürztraminer and Kerner fermented in steel vats. After fermentation, the wines were blended. After a period of resting on lees for about 10 months, the wine was bottled, and aged in bottle for a few months prior to release.
Golden yellow in the glass, with a complex and layered bouquet recalling notes of elderflower, pistachios and rose petals. Soft and elegant, the palate is concentrated, with a steely character, and a hint of herbs and passion fruit. It has considerable potential to age, due to the Riesling and Kerner, and will develop layers of honeyed, nutty complexity.