Greetings from Merano
I am just sitting in the living room of our sumptuous Suite overlooking the serene thermal town Merano in wonderful South Tyrol - my favorite destination for a short weekend getaway. This time I am on the way with Mr. Food Executive and we have been generously invited by the Relais&Chateaux Hotel Castel Fragsburg. This is the latest addition to the few South Tyrolean 5-star hotels and also the smallest luxury establishment of the Alps, with only 20-rooms.
Yesterday we have been at the world famous Merano Wine Festival 2014 and of course we had lots of excellent Italian wine. The good thing about this event is, that only the best wineries can exhibit in the Art Deco Kurhaus, the main venue of the Festival. The bad thing is, that the entry fee is 90.00 Euros per person excluding the fee for a glass which is another 10 euros. Well, after spending 100 euros you are allowed to drink as much wine as you can and of course you can eat as much as you can in the Gourmet Arena - for that offer it's more likely to be a fair price.
So how did we start? First we tried Champagne (Laurent Perrier and G.H. Mumm were some of our first wines we had), followed by several Rose sparkling and Ca'del Bosco's best Franciacorta wines (the Italian synonyme for Champagne - forget Prosecco). Of course we went to our top favorite wineries only, otherwise you end up drunk before even tested the white, red and sweet wines, nor Grappa or limoncello.
So we went further and visited
, our friends from
(who might invite us at their luxury B&B in Gaiole soon :-) ), the Baracchi stand with its excellent wines, our Instagram colleagues of Il Borro (a Relais&Chateaux property owned by Mr. Ferragamo - the Designer), as well as the stand of Castello Banfi - a world class 5-star property near Montalcino. Of course we tried some Ornellaia, excellent Argentinian and Georgian wines, as well as the best of every region in Italy.
At around 4.30 we left the Kurhaus to get back to the our heavenly base - the Castel Fragsburg. Before we dressed up for dinner, we went to the Spa to have an hour of relaxation. They have a very nice wellness area with two saunas, steam bath and a relaxation room overlooking the valley and Merano.