The Wines of Emilia Romagna
by Emanuele Tori
“Et però credo che molta felicità sia agli homini che nascono dove si trovano vini buoni” (Leonardo da Vinci)
“But I believe that there is a lot of happiness for those who were born where good wines are” (Leonardo Da Vinci)
Romans might have said “prosit!” (“might it be useful and healthy”).
Nowadays, you could listen to Italians saying “alla tua salute!” (“for your health!”). It is all about wine, but not only. An open bottle might reveal centuries of history.
These are just words expressing conviviality and enjoyment of a glass of wine either at a wedding lunch or on an ordinary day.
Wine embodies an Italian tradition to celebrate life and sociality, regardless of the importance of the event.
The significance of Emilia-Romagna wines is shown by its productivity: 21 wines D.O.P. (protected designation of origin) and 9 wines I.G.P. (protected geographical indication). Emilia Romagna wine production represents an example of sustainable development. Local, indigenous and poorly marketed wines are confined to regional and, more frequently, provincial borders and use.
Reasons of an enormous regional productivity are due to favourable climatic conditions and to the poor quality of drinkable water in the Pianura Padana resulting in an increased wine consumption.
Nature seems to create a self sufficient and autarchic land where every single part matches perfectly. Diversity and quality are main characteristics of Emilia Romagna wines which are perfect associations for regional products they are served with.
Variety covers almost every kind of thinkable wine, from red to white wine, from sparkling to still, from dry to dessert wines.
Lambrusco, red sparkling wine, is probably the most famous and most exported wine of Emilia Romagna. The area of production is Modena, Reggio Emilia and Parma. The sweet variety of red grapes, commonly known as “amabile” (smooth) is more famous compared to the dry variety. Despite its minor celebrity, the latter is of greater value when served cool with strongly flavoured dried meat like salame di Felino, Prosciutto di Parma, Culatello and seasoned cheeses like Parmigiano-Reggiano. Its accurate and precise way of bottling requires a lot of care in its preservation and makes it hard to export it. In the last years Lambrusco has been enhanced
Grapes of Sangiovese grow mainly in the provinces of Bologna and Romagna. The history of the name of Sangiovese dates back to the times of a monaster, on Monte Giove, where it was produced a dark red wine. So darkly coloured to resemble the blood of Giove (“sangue di Giove”). It is considered to be the most important wine of Emilia Romagna and it perfectly matches with rough and inviting dishes. It embodies the spirit of inhabitants of Romagna, red and passionate, resolute and calm as a man of work.
What makes Albana a special wine is a very limited area production and a rich variety raging from still white wine to sparkling spumante and to sweet wine (either known as “passito”) . The legend tells that an ancient queen , after having admired the golden colour and charming taste of Albana, was so impressed to exclaim that the wine should be drunk in gold (“da berti in oro”). This faboulous wine therefore explains the origins of the name of the village of Romagna, Bertinoro.
The dry version of Albana has a delicate and refrigerating taste differing from other wines of Emilia Romagna. Its modest production and aristocratic flavours, it embodies the noble spirit of inhabitants of Romagna.
“Albana Passita” is a remarkable wine tasting of liqueur. The way grapes are harvested, some time after the ordinary season, gives it a peculiar taste. A longer exposition to the sun increasing sugar and alcoholic percentage of grapes gives it a thick and robust golden colour. The result is a fortified wine very much appreciated with flavoured cakes and desserts.
Two people in the same place, at the same time, is already an important event to share a bottle of wine with a few words on politics, life or other unthinkable stories.
Discovering Emilia Romagna and discovering its wines, means understanding part of its identity.
- Albana di Romagna
- Bosco Eliceo
- Cagnina di Romagna
- Colli Bolognesi
- Colli Bolognesi Classico Pignoletto
- Colli di Faenza
- Colli d’Imola
- Colli di Parma
- Colli di Rimini
- Colli di Scandiano e di Canossa
- Colli Piacentini
- Colli di Romagna centrale
- Lambrusco di Sorbara
- Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro
- Lambrusco Salamino di Santa Croce
- Pagadebit di Romagna
- Romagna Albana spumante
- Sangiovese di Romagna
- Bianco di Castelfranco Emilia
- Fontana del Taro
- Sillaro e Bianco del Sillaro
- Terre di Veleja
- Val Tidone
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