Christelle Guibert headed up into the Dolomites to visit Elisabetta Foradori, a key figure in Italian winemaking, who put Trentino and its native grapes on the map...
Now fifteen minutes late and my blood pressure rising, I’m driving up and down this steep, serpentine road sliced through the Dolomites mountain range, trying to find Elisabetta Foradori’s house. It was a chance encounter with her wines five years ago that first sparked my curiosity. Wines with such energy and purity, from unheard-of grape varieties; a visit was a must.
Meeting Foradori, one is immediately struck by her calm poise, her elegance, charm and intensity. She comes across as friendly with a bohemian chic look, oozing charisma as if straight out of a Jean-Luc Godard movie.
Today she is joined at the table by Emilio, her eldest son. While Foradori seems thoroughly Italian, Emilio’s Germanic accent betrays something of his origins, and the region of Trentino.
Neighbouring Alto-Adige is the historic land of South Tyrol, and an echo of the Austrian empire remains. Names of places are in both Italian and German, the Bayern Munich flag is flown, and spaezle (gnocchi-like dumplings) are regularly seen on menus.