Saturday, June 30, 2012

Ruchè: A Little Unknown Never Hurt Anyone

Speaking of unique wines from Italy, having just wrote a piece on a dry Brachetto, I find myself drinking a Ruchè from the producer Crivelli. If you’ve never heard of Ruchè, I wouldn’t be surprised, it is one of the lowest production wines in Italy. However, I have to wonder why. As I have tasted the wines of Valle d’Aosta and as they become trendier, I think of how similar this Piedmontese native is to many of the peppery alpine wines of that region. I’ve read of similarities to Nebbiolo, yet I don’t see that in this glass. Instead, I see wild floral aromas and earthy flora contrasting a palate of sweet, intense berry fruit.

From master Class Risotto on
What's Cookin'
It’s certainly not for everyone but if you credit yourself as an open-minded explorer of Italian varietals, then this is the wine for you. To me, it’s a dive into the culture of the region and an understanding of the people. This wine screams for a plate of risotto or roasted game, anything with mushrooms or a rich plate of polenta.

You certainly don’t find a $22 bottle of wine that’s this interesting in Burgundy or Bordeaux and especially not Napa. I guess that’s one of the reasons I find myself going back to Italy over and over again; originality and value.

Give it a try and you won’t be disappointed.

2010 Crivelli Ruchè di Castagnole Monferrato – The nose was alpine-wild with pungent hillside flowers in the shade of yellow, crushed bush honeysuckle berries, chalk dust and notes of black pepper. From the nose, you’d expect the austere, yet on the palate it displayed medium weight with sweet raspberry, kept juicy by vibrant acidity. Then inner floral and lots of pepper notes carrying into the finish, which was long with remnants of ripe berries, pepper and a bit of clinging tannin. While sipping this, my mind wandered to the wines of Valle d'Aosta, with their peppery alpine profile. (89 points) Find it on Wine-searcher! 

1 comment:

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