Törggelen: a southern Tyrolean tradition

Törggelen: a southern Tyrolean tradition

by Jessica Zen
Stripes Europe

Törggelen, a celebration of young wine, chestnuts and feasts, is a great way to experience southern Tyrolean traditions in the fall. From October until mid-November, Törggelen observes when wine growers used to walk from farm to farm to taste young wine, known today as “neuer wein.” Nowadays, people can go on beautiful autumn walks while tasting culinary delights. The walks generally end at an inn, which will have an abundance of young wine, chestnuts, sausages and other local specialties. The rich fall colors of amber, red, burgundy, yellow and orange leaves only add to the enjoyable ambiance as you venture out in search of the perfect fall activity. 

Young wine is an alcoholic beverage made from fermented and freshly pressed grapes. It is similar to a sweet sparkling wine and is quite refreshing. Since the wine is actively fermenting, it needs to be consumed within a few days of purchase, otherwise, the flavor becomes less sweet and the alcohol content is higher. If you purchase young wine, the bottle cannot be sealed airtight due to the production of carbonic acid. Make sure you keep the bottle upright when transferring it home! You might have heard the terms “federweisser,” “neuer süßer,” “Junger wein” or “federroter.” These are all terms to describe the same thing. Make sure to have this with all of your meals while celebrating Törggelen! 

Common meals during Törggelen include a “marende” platter (seasoned speck bacon, homemade sausages and various cheeses), barley soup or a creamy vegetable soup, dumplings and "schlutzkrapfen" (pastries filled with spinach and cheese). You may also find a slaughter plate as the main course, filled with meat, sausages, sauerkraut and potato slices. Don’t forget the chestnuts! For dessert, sweet chestnuts are often served, whether roasted with butter or made into sweet rice or bread. 

If you love chestnuts or just a good hike, consider going on a chestnut trail hike! Avid hikers will love the Keschtnweg Trail, the longest in South Tyrol. You can hike on this path for eight days! For something a little shorter, consider the trail in Foiana near Lana (northern Italy). The trail has wooden figures and display boards to engage hikers and can be completed within two hours.

Intrigued? Check out some of these events going on during Törggelen: Gassltörggelen at Chiusa, Chestnut Week in San Genesio, Keschtnriggl, Ketschtnigl and the Törggele Feast at Colsano. These festive outings are a great excuse to get outside and get moving while eating some fantastic food!

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