Nebbiolo is the native Piedmontese grape par excellence. According to some sources, the origin of its name is to be found in the word “nebbia” (fog), as the berries are coated in a wax-like substance called pruinescence; others link it to the time of the harvest, late October, when the vineyards are shrouded every day in the morning fog. Nebbiolo is the most refined italian black grape variety of all; it is also the Piedmontese grape that presents the most heterogeneous “population”, which is likely the result of more frequent mutations.
It takes the name of Spanna in the areas of Boca, Bramaterra, Fara, Ghemme, Lessona and Sizzano.
LEAF: medium-large size, pentagonal, rather spherical shape.
Vespolina used to be one of the most important grapes in the area of the Oltrepò Pavese, cultivated since the end of the 18th century, but experienced a decline in celebrity when it began to be infested with Phylloxera. There are records of Vespolina production in Ghemme ever since 1465.
Its name recalls the word “vespa” (wasp): since the grapes ripen very early, wasps are especially attracted by the sweetness of the fully-ripened berries during harvest season. Semi-aromatic, the wine is characterized by a natural chemical called Rotundone, that develops during ripening and gives it a distinctive aromatic hint, especially of pepper. It’s also known with the synonym of Ughetta / Uvetta.
LEAF: small size, pentagonal, jagged, has five lobes.
GRAPE BUNCH: medium size, cylindrical or conical shape, moderately compact; sometimes a second smaller bunch is present.
BERRY: medium size, ellipsoidal with thin and soft skin of blue-black color.
This name relates to at least three different grape varieties: Croatina in the areas of the Oltrepò Pavese and Colli Piacentini; Uva Rara on the hills of Novara and Vercelli and the aromatic Bonarda Piemontese in the general area of Piedmont, almost extinct after the spread of Phylloxera.
Our Uva Rara is a red grape variety of ancient origin: its name comes from the scarce number of berries found in the bunch (rara = scarce), that generally affects its productivity.
As the only grape variety commonly eaten, it used to be put to dry after the harvest; after rehydration people would consume it as fresh grapes during Christmas festivities.
Even today, the origin of this native Piedmontese grape variety is not quite clear. Some believe it hails from the Basso Monferrato, for others it comes from the Canavese and pre-Alpine areas; yet its semi-aromatic character reminds of a Mediterranean origin.
The name derives from the bright color of its berries: apparently it used to be known during Roman times as “Alba Lux”, meaning dawn light.
The Innominabile is a grape variety of many qualities: thanks to its strong acidity and the sweetness of the berries, it allows for the production of many different kinds of wines, from spumanti (sparkling wines) to passiti (raisin wines).
The latter benefit from both the acidic component of the grape and its sugar content; for this reason they are able to resist the attack of molds and pests.
LEAF: medium size, rather spherical, has five lobes.
GRAPE BUNCH: medium size, cylindrical, long, compact, winged.
BERRY: medium-large size, spherical with an averagely thick skin, fairly pruinose yellow-green color. Some varieties also take on shades of orange and pink.
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