Törggelen in South Tyrol
Autumn is wine-making season, but it is also the time for harvesting and eating chestnuts. These two ingredients are at the heart of an ancient tradition of South Tyrol which goes by the name of “Törggelen”.
The word means “treading” (the process by which grapes are made into wine) and originally it referred to a fixed date when the farmers would gather together with friends and relatives to tread the grapes in the “Stube” (the only heated room in the house, which functioned both as wine cellar and dining room).
Later on, however, the tradition changed and it became a celebration of the end of the grape harvest and a chance to give thanks for nature’s autumnal gifts. The location of this celebration also changed as it was transferred from the Stube into local inns, which were known as “Buschenschank”. These inns would hang a green branch over their doors (the “Buschen”, of course), so that travellers would know they could taste vino novello and other traditional specialities there.
This event still takes place today, generally between October and the beginning of advent, and it is much enjoyed not only by the local people, but especially by tourists. They are able to experience a charming custom that is unique to the traditional South Tyrol way of life.
As well as tasting vino novello, you can eat chestnuts and other local produce, such as walnuts, smoked ham, homemade bread, krapfen (a type of doughnut) and many other specialities, both sweet and savoury.
There are also many places outside where local people roast chestnuts and sell them in paper bags, so visitors can enjoy eating them during a pleasant stroll.
Of course, if you prefer you can also arrange a family or group trip to go and gather chestnuts yourselves, in the midst of the unspoiled South Tyrol countryside.
Without doubt, autumn offers a wealth of possibilities for spending a unique and unforgettable holiday.
Come and join us here and enjoy the beauty of South Tyrol!