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Wine Books about Piedmont - Wine Growers, Wines and local Specialties

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Welcome to my wine books about Piedmont!

Background

I have visited a number of famous wine areas in the USA, France, Spain, Germany and Italy over the years. The region of Piedmont in Italy has left me with a particular impression because of the very interesting synthesis of nature, culture, people and wine. As I started to document my impressions I thought I would like to combine some of my interest areas, such as wine, photography, digital imaging and of course the people and the culture. The main objective with this book is to present the people behind the wine, because I believe this reflects the wine they make.

Piedmont - Viticulture and Wine Growers

A Short Wine History of Piedmont

The wine history of Piedmont is similar to other wine areas of Italy. Piedmont wines are supposed to have been known already during the Roman times. However, Piedmont only became known as a producer of good wines as it became a province of its own. From the 12th until the 19th century Piemonte was part of the region called Savoy, which was a kingdom of its own until the end of the 19th century, when the Italy of today was founded during the Risorgimento. At this time there was also a region called Montferrat in the northern part of today’s Italy. This region still exists in people’s minds, but is no legal region, but you will see it on e.g. wine bottles. The French influence was significant during this period – the Alpine passes were important for travel between France and Savoy. Piedmont today is a large region reaching from the Aosta valley in the north almost down to the Mediterranean Sea in the south. The most famous wines, truffles and other specialities come from the area called Langhe centred around the city of Alba. This area is full of hills, which give a spectacular view, especially in the autumn.

Barolo, Barbaresco and many more wonderful wines

When you think of Piemonte, wine names like Barolo and Barbaresco of course come to mind. However, you should not forget that there are several other wine types which are not so famous but still very good or even excellent! Dolcetto is a wine with strong character, Barbera is a very good and fruity wine, and Nebbiolo, which is the grape for Barolo and Barbaresco, is a wine you can also drink young. The Grignolino you will find more in the direction Montferrat and north of Asti with a different taste and an interesting potential. Or why not the Ruché, which has a bouquet that reminds you of a rose. Or maybe the Freisa, another great wine. There are also other white wines than the typical Arneis, like the Favorita as an aperitif wine or some new grapes like Nas-cetta from Novello, an excellent white wine for the summer, or a wine from a grape called Rossese (marketed under the name of “Roserto”), which are offered by only a few winegrowers.

The first edition

The first edition of this book appeared in 2002. The objective at that time was the ascent of Piedmont to a serious producer of excellent wine. This was among other things the result of the work of the “Barolo Boys” (Domenico Clerico, Marco Parusso, Giorgio Rivetti and many more), showing that Piedmont could produce excellent wine. The established winegrowers at that time produced good wine, but it also showed that a new generation was coming which was able to introduce new production methods and able to produce excellent wine. In addition, there are new, small winegrowers who intend to produce excellent wine, and they will also need attention..

Barrique

One of the many things I learned during the many visits to the winegrowers was that the use of barriques is more selectively in use now than it used to be. Some of the winegrowers I talked to were of the opinion that the use of barriques for Nebbiolo and Dolcetto is not the best usage for those types of wine. On the other hand it seems to be better to use barriques for the Barbera, which supports the maturing of the Barbera. The trend now seems to be that mid-size or large oak barrels are preferred for Nebbiolo in order to promote the elegance of the Nebbiolo grape. For the Barolo and Barbaresco this is what has been used for a long time.

Monferrato

Once upon a time there was a region called Montferrat which in reality today does not exist since the creation of the Italy of today (the Risorgimento, ending in 1870). Today it is not a legal region but more a territory which used to be well known for its wine – but the name Montferrat is still in use. The territory is located partly in the Cuneo region in the south, Alessandria in the east and partly in Asti. This region, which mainly is north of Asti and to the east, today is overshadowed by the famous Barolo and Barbaresco. Because of the famous history of Montferrat I got the idea of visiting some of the winegrowers in Montferrat as well to see what they are doing today. For the first visit I picked a winegrower in Cella Monte, La Casaccia – more about that later. But this will not be the only one!

Piedmont


  1. Red Wines

    Famous red wines like Barolo, Barbaresco, Barbera, Dolcetto, Grignolino, Freisa, Nebbiolo

  2. White Wines

    Famous White Wines like Arneis, Favority, Rossese, Nas-Cetta, Moscato d'Asti

  3. Specialties

    Here some examples: Truffles, Torrone, Hazelnuts, Plin, Castelmagno, handgemachte Grissini

  4. Where to stay over night

    Some suggestions: Tra Arte&Cerche in Monchiero, Le Viole in Vergne,

  5. Truffles

    A famous hunter for truffles: Ezio Costa, Tra Arte&Cerche in Monchiero