Barbera sparkling wine, handpicked and harvested early in the “Metodo Classic” from Tenuta Montemagno? I’ll take that. And take it I did. Two bottles from the same winery, that “refines on yeasts for 24 (TM24) and 36 months (TM36)” being their only difference. The full details are here in their press release. Below are my tasting notes, and below that is new news!
Tenuta Montemagno 24 (TM24)
The color of rose gold, with teeny tiny energetic bubbles. The aromas included fresh apricot, raspberry, strawberry, biscuit, cheddar, talcum powder and ash. Same strawberry fruit in the flavor as well as crisp Meyer lemon and pink grapefruit. Liked the balance of fruit and mild acidity. This was my favorite of the two.
Tenuta Montemagno 36 (TM36)
A little less color, more like salmon, with the same exuberant bubbles. This one gave off hints of cherry, fruit cocktail, jasmine flowers, cream and a toasted wood on the nose. Tasting it I got that same cream but also a slight tart cherry and limeade. Same great balance with possibly a little more acidity, however it was mild. I shared these two with Prosecco-loving guests. They took photos and will be seeking them out.
News: The Indigenous varieties of Tenuta Montemagno: Grignolino d’Asti doc – Ruber
Ruber is the Grignolino d’Asti of Tenuta Montemagno. It is another great witness of the valorization of Monferrato indigenous varieties that is one of the beliefs of TM philosophy.
When we talk about this grape, the connection to our farmer and wine growers’ roofs is immediate. Grignolino is a rare and difficult grape to cultivate and to vinify. This wine is renowned since the Middle Ages with the name of Barbesino – from Latin Barbexinus and its existence attested by the XIII century citations, reported in the archives of Casale Monferrato. The current name’s etymology could find its origin from the Asti dialectical noun gragnola or grignole, meaning the numerous seeds in the grape, which is definitely one of its traits.
The challenge of Tiziano Barea and the Oenologue of Tenuta Montemagno was, at first, to transform the Grignolino, this ancient and “farmer” wine, into a contemporary one, preserving the original identity and organoleptic structure.
The vineyard reserved for the Grignolino cultivation has South-Southwest exposure and the characteristic soil’s composition, made of calcareous clay with slightly silty marls are the environment where it grows up, on vines of 30 years old, Guyot trained.
The grapes are worked by hand as well as by hand are harvested. The vinification process has been studied to valorize the “plus” of the Grignolino and to balance them with the innate astringency. The first step is to eliminate 2 of the 4 seed of the bounce then, the long maturing with skin contact brings out the full aroma of dried roses and the aromatic complexities of wild strawberry, wild berries and, in particular, raspberries.
Ruber is the name that identifies the Grignolino d’Asti of Tenuta Montemagno. Ruber – from Latin, it is the color, ruby red, transparent and eyes catching.
Ruber is the successful and contemporary Grignolino d’Asti of Tenuta Montemagno: the taste profile reveals the personality of a wine that is uninhibited and versatile in terms of food pairing, fairly mouth-filling, with tannins that are present but not aggressive, a suitably crisp, dry finish, and a good follow-through with the fruity notes that appear in the bouquet.
Ruber is the expression of Tenuta Montemagno wine making style, solid and convincing, that looks at the tradition with a modern eye but without useless stretches and with concrete and constant high quality.
In every glass of Grignolino, we find the important oenological story of Piedmont. Ruber is a red wine of friendly character, able to let us enjoy the aperitif – when served lightly chilled, the fish based dishes and the classical recipes of the Piedmont’s cuisine, as the medium seasoned cheese, the Muletta – typical salame of Monferrato, and the Agnolotti – stuffed pasta.
Eve Bushman has a Level Two Intermediate Certification from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust (WSET), a “certification in first globally-recognized course” as an American Wine Specialist ® from the North American Sommelier Association (NASA), Level 1 Sake Award from WSET, was the subject of a 60-minute Wine Immersion video (over 16k views), authored “Wine Etiquette for Everyone” and has served as a judge for the Long Beach Grand Cru and the Global Wine Awards. You can email Eve@EveWine101.com to ask a question about wine or spirits.