Less well known than Montalcino and Chianti and confused with Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano is often a joy to drink and the quality has never been better.
So first up – lets get things straight.
Montepulciano d’Abruzzo is a wine made from the Montepulciano grape in the Abruzzo region of Italy.
Vino Nobile di Montepulciano is literally a Noble Wine from Montepulciano, it is made with the Grosso clone of Sangviovese which is the ‘same’ (in inverted comma’s because as with all things vinous in Italy – what things say they are, what they should be and what they actually are may not be the same things at all) clone as used in Montalcino for producing Brunello.
Montepulciano – as the name suggests is a hiltop town – just as Montalcino is – indeed both towns share many similarities in style of geography. But what about the wines?
It has to be said that whilst, on the surface of it, it appears that both towns have equal opportunity to create magnificent wines, dig a little deeper and the realisation is that whilst Vino Nobile is perfectly capable of making very good wines it probably won’t ascend to the heights of Montalcino. Montalcino has a unique microclimate enabling grapes to ripen a week earlier whilist the vines produce smaller berries giving greater depth of flavour and more structured wines. In addition, regulations on the ageing of both wines differ with Brunello given longer ageing in barrel before bottling.
That said Vino Nobile can be absolutely delicious too! And because it doesn’t carry the reputation or quite hit the heights that Brunello CAN (but not always does) achieve the prices are much more reasonable.
Canneto Vino Nobile di Montepulciano 2008
Lots of sour red fruits, complex and fresh – this is a pretty serious wine that with a little bit of further integration will be delightful. With firm grippy structure and acidity that demands it be matched with Italian food.