Category Archives: Albana

Wines of Romagna Part II

Marina Thompson, of Rome-based Thompson International Marketing, is a wine marketing expert and a long time friend. She invited me to attend two Zoom telecasts to discuss the wines of Romagna. The telecasts took place a few days apart in the middle of December

The speaker for both was her husband Daniele Cernilli.  Daniele Cernilli, aka Doctor Wine, is the author of The Essential Guide to Italian Wine 2021 and one of the foremost authorities on Italian wine.  Daniele pointed out that Emilia-Romagna is considered one region, but as far as wine and food are concerned they are very different. See Wines of Romagna Part 1

Daniele said the three most important grapes in Romagna are Albana (the first Italy white to be awarded the DOCG), Sangiovese, and Trebbiano.

He also spoke of one of my favorite Italian restaurants San Domenico in Imola where I had a wonderful lunch in November 2019. He also mentioned one of my favorite cites to visit, Ravenna because of its long history and wonderful mosaics

All these Romagna wines are available in the US.

IMG_3931Albano Secco “ I Croppi” 2019 Celli made from 100% Albana. Production area Bertinoro. The soil is a clayey mixture with limestone and the exposure is east-south east. There are 3,000 to 500 plants per hectare and the training system is double guyot. Harvest was the first week of September. Fermentation is in stainless steel tanks as is the aging. The wine has hints of yellow peaches, apricots, a touch of citrus with salty and mineral  notes.  Imported by SolStars Inc.IMG_3930

Albano Secco “Bianco Di Ceparano” 2019 Fattoria Zerbina made from 100% Albano. The vineyard is high-density bush vines trained to a single stake which is a return to the tradition of the Romagna hills. There is the advantage of a 360 degree exposure of the canopy to direct sunlight and harvesting can be in any direction. Six months in cement tanks and then in stainless steel. The wine has hints of ripe citrus fruit, apples, pears and a touch of honeydew. Daniele said all of their wines are top quality and some are among the best in the country.  Imported by Sussey Wine Merchants.

IMG_3924Romagna Sangiovese Predappio 2018 Notturno Drei Dona – La Palazza made from 100% Sangiovese from the best grapes in their vineyards. There are 3,300 and 5,000 plants per hectare. Fermentation is in steel and concrete at a controlled temperature. The grapes are harvested, vinified and aged separately then assembled to complete the wine. The wine is aged for about one year is 15 and 25HL traditional casks and 500 liter tonneaux. The wine is bottled unfiltered. The wine has hints of dark red fruit, blackberries and blueberries, a touch of sweet spice and a note of caramel. Daniele said this estate is a point of reference not only for wine lovers but also for other producers. Imported by LNJ Brands, Inc

IMG_3928Sangiovese Superiore I Diavoli Le Rocche Malatestiane made from 100% sangiovese from vineyards between San Clemente and Gemmano in Rimini. The soil is tinted clay and chalk adjacent to the town of Gemmano at 250 meters. The wine is aged for six months in concrete tanks and one month is steel tanks. The production area for I Diavoli is close to the Natural Reserve of Onferno, called inferno (hell), because of the vapor rising from the crevasses and the bats, “the devils,” who lived in the underlining karst caves. The wine has hints of black cherry, blueberries, wildflowers and a touch of spice. It is part of the Cevico Group with 5,000 suppliers-partners that offers well-made wines at affordable prices.  Imported by Terre Cevico

IMG_3929Sangiovese Riserva Bertinoro 2014 Fattoria Paradiso made from 100% from the Vigna Delle Lepri Sangiovese Grosso. The wine is aged in cask for 18 months and 6 months in barriques followed by 12 months in bottle before release. I visited the winery a number of years ago and was impressed by this particular wine. The wine will be available in the US early this year.   The wine has hints of blackberry, black cherry, licorice, dried roses and a touch of chocolate. Imported by Panebianco LLC

IMG_3927Romagna Sangiovese Predappio 2018 Noelia Ricci La Pandolfa 100% Sangiovese large berried type (Romagna biotype) from the Godenza vineyard in San Cristoforo in Foli. The vineyard is at 300 to 340 meters and the soil is ochre-colored clay and calcareous marl, with traces of sand. Vines were planted in 1999. There are 4,500 plants per hectare and they are spurred-cordon trained. Manual harvest the second week of September. Grapes from different clones are harvested together for fermentation. Fermentation and maceration take place on the skins in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks. Skin contact for about 28 days followed by 8 months in steel tanks and 12 months in bottle before release. The winery is converting to organic farming. The wine has hints of red fruit, raspberries and with a hint of spice.


They owners have a fascination with the animal world and went through illustrations from late 19th century archives to illustrate their labels.  These figures lend themselves to a certain freedom of imagination. The most advanced of animals, the monkey, is represented on the oldest wine, Godenza. Imported by Artisanal Cellars

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Romagna: Albana to Sangiovese

The Simply Italian Wine Tour that is held in NYC is an opportunity for me to taste and learn about wines from all over Italy.img_1647

The seminar that I attended was “Romagna: Albana to Sangiovese, Journey into Native Italian Varietals.”

These two grape varieties do not get the attention they deserve. The seminar was hosted by Filiberto Mazzanti, Director at Consorzio Vini di Romagna and Giammario Villa, Giammario Villa Wine Selections.img_1656

Filiberto said that the Consorzio has 104 winemaking producers, 7 cooperative wineries and 5 bottling companies. It provides producers with legal assistance, protection of the denomination and protection of DOCG, DOC and IGt Romagna wines.

Romagna is the eastern half of Emilia Romagna in the center of Italy between Tuscany and the Adriatic Sea.

Albana, this white grape may have been introduced into Romagna by the ancient Romans. Albana refers to the color of the grapes, Albus, white in Latin. The grape produces sparkling wine (spumante,) dry wines (secco), medium–sweet (amabile) and a dessert wine passito.

Albana was the first white wine to receive the DOCG in 1987.img_1657

Romagna Albana DOCG “Frangipane” 2015 100% Albana Tenuta La Viola The vineyard is at 200 meters and the exposure is west. There is an early harvesting of the grapes. Alcoholic fermentation takes place without the skins at a controlled temperature. The wine remains on the fine lees for 5 months. The wine is crisp with good acidity.img_1660

Romagna Albana DOCG “Secco Sette Note” 2015 Poderi Morini 100% Albana. Fermentation is in steel tanks and the wine is aged in steel tanks and in bottle for 5 months before release. The wine has hints of hawthorn, yellow flowers and white peach.img_1659

Romagna Albana DOCG “Secco Progetto 1” 2015 Leone Conti 100% Albana from the Faenza Hills, Santa Lucia. The grapes are harvested slightly overripe. Cold fermentation takes place in steel tanks and the wine is aged for 7 months in steel tanks. The wine has hints of peaches, apricot, citrus and honey. $12img_1658

Romagna Albana DOCG “Albano Secco” 2015 Cantina Sociale Di Cesena-Tenuta Amalia100% Albana from the hills of Cesena and Bertinoro. Soft pressing is followed by low temperature fermentation in stainless steel tanks for 10 to 15 days. Fining in stainless steel tanks for 4 months. The wine has hints of ripe peach, butterscotch and almonds.

Sangiovese has been produced in Romagna since the 17th century. Recent discoveries suggest that Sangiovese is of pre-Greek origin and may be a native vine of Romagna.

Sangiovese in Latin means “the blood of Jove” (Jupiter) and the reason for the name is open to interpretation. It may have gotten it name from a commune of monks from Rimini, in Romagna. Sangiovese is the most planted grape variety in Italy.

There is genetic evidence that more than 2,000 years ago grapes of “Sangiovese” were already used by the Etruscans for wine production.

They produce Novello, a basic Sangiovese, Sangiovese Superiore and a Sangiovese Riserva. The wines differ by alcohol content and aging. img_1653

Romagna Sangiovese Superiore DOP “Caciara” 2015 Enio Ottaviani 100% Sangiovese from San Clemente. Fermentation takes place in concrete vats and the wine is aged in big barrels for 6 months. This was pure Sangiovese with hints of cherry and violets.img_1651

Romagna Sangiovese Superiore DOC 2015 Azienda Agricola San Valentino 100% Sangiovese from vineyards southwest of Rimini. Fermentation is in both stainless and concrete tanks at a controlled temperature. Malolactic fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks. The wine is aged for 8 months is 500 liter French oak casks, mostly second passage. The wine has hints of raspberries and plum with notes of leather and licorice.img_1652

Romagna Sangiovese Superiore Riserva DOCAmarcord d’un Ross” 2013 Trere 85% Sangiovese and 15% Cabernet Sauvignon from vineyards in Faenza. Harvest takes place at the end of September. Vinification: in stainless steel vats for 2 months. The wine is aged in French oak barrels of 225 liters for 12 months and 6 months in bottle before release. It has hints of wild berries, cherries, a hint of spice and a touch of toast. $20img_1654

Romagna Sangiovese Superiore Riserva DOC “Olmatello’ 2013 Podere La Berta made from 100% Sangiovese from vineyards in Brisighella. Selected grapes are pressed and crushed. Fermentation takes place at a controlled temperature. Maceration on the skins is for 12 to 18 days with daily pumping over. Malolactic fermentation is in stainless steel tanks. In March/April the wine is transferred to 225 liter new and used oak barrels where it remains for about 24 months. The wine is aged for 6 months in bottle before release. The wine has hints of red and black berries, spice and a light toastiness. $35img_1650

Romagna Sangiovese Superiore Riserva Bertinoro DOC Baron & Ruseval 2013 Celli made from 100% Sangiovese from vineyards in Bertinoro. Fermentation is in steel where the wine remains for 6 months on the lees. The wine is aged for 1 year in French barriques, with a middle toasting and 2 years in bottle before release. The wine has hints of strawberry and cherry with floral notes and touch of balsamic. $35 img_1649

Romagna Sangiovese Superiore Riserva Marzeno DOC Pietramora 2013 Fattoria Zerbina 98% Sangovese and 2% Ancellotta from vineyards in the Marzeno Valley. Fermentation is for two weeks, 50% in barrels and 50% in stainless steel. Punching down takes place twice a day then reduced to once a day and pumping over for one week. The wine has hints of cherry and strawberry with touches of tobacco and oak spice. $44.99





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Filed under Albana, Italian Red Wine, Italian White Wine, Romagna, Sangiovese, Uncategorized