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Blog: Lambrusco


Grape variety

A faithful companion in the summer heat of the Po Valley, irreplaceable friend, at the lavish banquets in Emilia, partner in a thousand occasions in Italy and overseas, in Europe and on the other side of the world, that is this sparkling wine, a generous and humble companion at work and at leisure in the 'Valley of the Gods', as the Po Valley is called, but sought after for its cheerfulness all over the world, whenever one wants to drink a glass of wine in joy and exuberance, without problems if it should not remain with just one glass. It is not easy to talk about a wine so popular, so genuinely Italian, so incomparable, so unique, not to be confused with any other. This seemingly modest wine is in fact vinified like a great one, according to the method of sparkling wine production in pressure tanks; its beautiful color should and there not deceive. Of course, we mean good Lambrusco, because in the trade, unfortunately, you can find quite inferior products.

But first it should be said that the name can mean everything and nothing. It can be DOC or table wine, come from Reggio Emilia or Modena. If it comes from Modena, it can be Sorbara, Salamino di S. Croce or Grasparossa di Castelvetro. It can be dry or more or less sweet. Undoubtedly: there is a Lambrusco, for every taste, for example, in Milan people prefer a softer variety, while in Reggio they prefer the dry variety. The one from Reggio smells of raspberries and currants, its taste is rounded, it has more body and is smoother than its cousin from Modena. The one from Sorbara has a violet bouquet, its taste is more savory and tart. Grasparossa di Castelvetro and Salamino di S. Croce stand out for their fruity bouquet.

As I said, there is a suitable representative of this red sparkling wine for every taste, each has its enthusiastic followers who would not exchange it even for two bottles of another variety. This wine has always been a wine 'for all days' and it still is. The first written records date back to 861 B.C.; as early as 851 of our era, the Church of Modena demanded in writing the delivery of a certain quantity of this wine each year. Cato was also impressed by the enormous quantity of wine produced in Emilia, 300 amphorae per jugero (a Roman amphora held 28 liters and a jugero was equivalent to 2580 square meters).

But let's leave the history of this wine, rich in interesting events, and come to our present days: up to 2 million hectoliters are produced annually (DOC and table wine). This is a huge amount of wine, but it is sold effortlessly at home and abroad, although a certain percentage of the total production is sent to distillation. In comparison, Italy alone drinks as much red sparkling wine as the exporting countries combined. That is quite an amount. In view of the decrease in the consumption of red wine, the consumption of Lambrusco has so far remained unchanged - which can be considered a success. In fact, Lambrusco is a wine that, like a chameleon, disguises itself as a white wine in summer, being fresh and light, while in the cold and foggy winter of the Po Valley it becomes a true red wine to be drunk with strong, hearty dishes. - Gerardo



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NameLambrusco
Type/PageGrape variety

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