Montepulciano (Montepulciano) is a medium-bodied red wine originally from Italy, made from the grape variety of the same name. In its homeland, it is the second most common red variety after Sangiovese, it is loved for an affordable price, unpretentiousness and a good gastronomic combination with traditional Italian dishes.
Attention! Montepulciano wine should not be confused with Nobile de Montepulciano. The latter is a Tuscan wine based on very different grape varieties, mainly Sangiovese. And “Montepulciano” in this case does not refer to berries, but to the name of the area in which this drink is produced.
Possible origin of the variety
The Montepulciano variety is especially common in the South and Central part of Italy, but it is almost not found in the North of the country. Wine experts believe that its homeland may be Tuscany, and the variety itself may be distantly related to Sangiovese, with which it is often confused.
Interesting fact: the name of the variety has nothing to do with the city of the same name, and in the vicinity of Montepulciano, this grape is not cultivated.
The taste of Montepulciano wine has notes of red plum, oregano, sour cherry, Boysen berry, resin. The drink is characterized by high tannin and acidity, rich ruby color.
The best examples of this species are produced in the Abruzzo region. Abruzzo Montepulciano wine has an almost inky black color, the aroma of dark fruits and chocolate notes.
Dry wine Montepulciano is of two types: aged in oak and young.
Aged much darker, notes of prunes, licorice, vanilla, mocha coffee and, in fact, oak are added to the fruity aroma. To get rid of the spicy tannic taste, the drink must be aged for at least 4 years, but it gets the Riserva status after two years of aging. This Montepulciano costs about $ 30-80 per bottle.
As for young wine, some producers reduce the concentration of tannins by removing the skins from the pulp during fermentation, so the drink turns out to be lighter and often even belongs to the category of pink, not red wines. The bouquet is dominated by red fruits and berries, raspberries, cranberries, light notes of violets, dried herbs, you can often catch a barely noticeable taste of earth. A bottle of young Montepulciano costs between $ 9-15.
99% of Montepulciano is produced in Italy, and small productions of this wine are located in Argentina and the United States.
In Italy, strict quality standards are established in each region of production.
- Abruzzo (Abruzzo):
- Montepulciano d’abruzzo DOC (at least 85% of the content of Montepulciano, the rest of the volume may fall on Sangiovese);
- Montepulciano d’abruzzo Colline Teramane DOCG (at least 90%);
- Controguerra Rosso DOC (at least 60%).
- March (Marche):
- Rosso Conero DOC (at least 85%);
- Rosso Piceno DOC (30-70%);
- Offida Rosso DOCG (minimum 85%).
- Molise (Molise):
- Offida Rosso DOCG (60-70%).
- Puglia (Puglia):
- San Severo Rosso DOC (minimum 70%).
How to drink the wine of Montepulciano
Like any medium-bodied red wine, Montepulciano is combined with many dishes, but it makes the most successful gastronomic pairs with meat, especially if it is sufficiently fat and cooked with spices.
- Meat: pork, hamburgers with beef, pasta Bolognese with minced meat, barbecue or kebab, English shepherd’s pie, pizza with meat, etc.
- Cheese: baked macaroni and cheese, Mature Cheddar, Parmesan, pepper Jack.
- Seasonings: oregano, thyme, rosemary, sage, coriander, black pepper, cumin, cumin, dried jalapeno, cocoa, coffee.
- Vegetables: baked potatoes with various fillings, hamburgers with vegetables, fried mushrooms, wild rice with beans, Jerusalem artichoke.