We The Italians | Italian wine: Main red wines from Lombardy

Italian wine: Main red wines from Lombardy

Italian wine: Main red wines from Lombardy

  • WTI Magazine #25 Apr 11, 2014
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WTI Magazine #25    2014 Apr, 11
Author : Vino OK      Translation by:


Lombardy is a nationally unmatched area from the quantitative point of view of the production of wine. The Lombard wine can in fact rely on a large number of specialties, but among these only a few have managed, over the years, to get the DOC or DOCG label. The second category includes, among others, the wines produced in Valtellina, a true oasis of good red region.

Whether you know a minimum about enology or you are a profane, you should have heard about the wines produced in the Oltrepò Pavese, a flat area situated in the southern part of the region, at the border with Emilia Romagna and the Po Valley.

We're talking about an area rich in terms of food and wine, where some of the most popular specialties of the region and some of the most delicious Italian wines come from. One of these is certainly the Oltrepò Pavese DOC red, produced in a land that includes 42 municipalities within the boundaries of the province of Pavia, and has many sub-denominations.

An elegant wine

The Oltrepò Pavese DOC red wine is characterized by a ruby red color and a very stable load, meaning that it does not change with aging. On the nose, this specialty has an intense, persistent and typically vinous, while in the mouth is dry, velvety and characterized by a good body, as well as an alcohol content that rarely exceeds 12 degrees.

During the blend it involves different grape varieties: the highest percentage is represented by the Barbera grape, followed immediately by Croatina, red grape varietals extremely common in northern Italy, and other local grapes. Like nearly all the most elegant red, even Oltrepò Pavese DOC has a classical variant and a reserve, different for the aging. In the first case, this phase lasts a minimum of two years and a maximum of three, while in the second case the wine can be stored up to 5 years. To tell the truth, also the alcohol content is good to divide the two types, because the reserve is at least one degree higher.

As far as the service temperature and combinations, this wine should be served at 16-18 degrees Celsius and as an accompaniment to robust and full-bodied pasta dishes, but also together with excellent main courses of red meat, sausages and hard mature cheese.

Lombard bubbles: Lambrusco Mantovano

A different wine, both in terms of organoleptic characteristics and of the production area is Lambrusco, certainly one of the most famous Italian specialties, as well as among the most appreciated wines in the world. It must be said that this is a wine perhaps more representative of the Emilia Romagna region than of Lombardy, but at the same time we cannot forget that in the area surrounding the city of Mantova this red is at its best. The Lambrusco Mantovano DOC is produced in two different areas of the province of Mantova: the first is the Viadanese, between the rivers Po and Oglio, the second is the Oltrepò Mantovano, agricultural land close to the province of Modena. It is a sparkling wine, also in rosé kind, marked by a minimum alcohol content of 10.5 degrees. It gives the best of itself on sausage and pork.

San Colombano Red Doc

The area between Milan and Pavia is an interesting wine area, particularly for the specialty called the San Colombano Doc, a red wine produced in a hilly area dominated from San Colombano to Lambro and also composed of other smaller municipalities, which Sant'Angelo Lodi, Mirandolo Terme and Inverno Monteleone.

This wine has a red coloration with a variable intensity and is characterized by a typically vinous scent, enriched with hints of blackberry and cherry. At the palate is dry but full-bodied and velvety, quite spectacular in the aftertaste, punctuated by pleasant hints of sweet almond. The St. Columban Red Doc reaches a maximum alcohol content of 11 degrees and is perfect in combination with appetizers and second courses.

This is not an excellent product, but if we have to recommend a wine capable of introducing the ancient roots of enology and the heart of rural traditions in Lombardy, probably we could not mention a better wine. The area surrounding the Lambro is generally not to be missed for those who want to reach out and touch the best of regional nature, and that is where this little known but worth discovering wine comes from.