I’ve been on an Italian Wine kick lately.
I mean who can blame me there. Italian wines kick ass. I’ve never really explored Italian wines much because quite frankly, they are intimidating AF. There are so many different regions and grapes and wines it’s hard to figure out where to start.
Luckily, you guys have me and I’m going to let you in on a little secret about one of the hottest new wine regions in Italy. You’ll be so ahead of the curve when you casual say, “I just had an amazing rosé from the Lugana Region. . . Oh? You’ve never heard of it? You must not know much about wine.” ::smirks because neither do you::
The Lugana Region
So like I said, the Lugana region is the hot new wine region. It’s located in the north of Italy (like so north you’re almost in Switzerland) and it is producing some amazing wines. The thing that makes the Lugana region so amazing is this little thing called Lake Garda. Over time, the water levels of Lake Garda have decreased exposing tons of riverbeds which are prime for vineyards. Due to this the soil here has a unique composition of limestone and minerals which help grapes develop wonderful color and body.
I was lucky enough to get a exclusive taste of three wines from Cà Maiol, a well respected vineyard located in Lugana. Cà Maiol was founded in 1967 by Walter Contato. The Contato family still runs and operates the vineyard which is composed of four farmhouses all in the Lugana region.
The area of Lugana itself is relatively small, about 2500 acres and the Contato family owns roughly 400 of those acres. The three wines I was able to get a taste of are their Rosé and two whites, the “Molin” and the “Prestige”. Both white wines are made from the same grapes. However, the wines are made and aged with different methods which produces distinctly different wines.
Valtenesi DOP Chiaretto “Roseri”
Obviously the rosé comes first because it’s the wine I’m most excited about. This rosé gives me life. It’s made up of a blend of Groppello, Marzemino, Sangiovese, Barbera grapes. The skins are left to macerate for 48 hours at a low temperature (this is called cryomaceration) which gives this rosé a deep pink color. There is a delicate flavor of peach and herbs. Definitely unlike any rosés I’ve previously had, but highly recommended. Pair this rosé with seafood, spicy food or white meat.
Lugana DOP Prestige
The Prestige is made with Turbiana grapes and aged in steel barrels before aging in the bottle for just under a year. There is an upfront taste of apple and a nice acidity. The finish is smooth and bright. Cà Maiol suggests that you pair this wine with shellfish, seafood, pasta, risotto, and slightly fatty fish.
Lugana DOP “Molin”
Do not let the dark bottle fool you, there is an award winning white wine hidden in there. The Molin is made from turbiana grapes (the same as the Prestige) and only the best grapes are used for this particular wine. The wine has a beautiful light yellow color and a . Oh, and those awards I was talking about? This wine is a 3 time “Tre Bicchieri” by Gambero Rosso winner and in 2015 received a silver from the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles. So I guess you could say it’s a good wine. Food pairing suggestions for the Molin are fish, raw red meat, vegetables soups, cheese.
So, like I said before, these wines aren’t widely available in the United States. If you’re looking to find a place to buy them get a hold of me via email or Instagram and I’ll make sure I can help you out! I would hate for someone to not try that rosé.