Description: Ruchè is an indigenous grape from Monferrato, the origins of which are shrouded in mystery and therefore subject to a wide variety of explanations: the ancient proximity of the vineyards to a convent dedicated to San Rocco, which has now disappeared, or the steep slopes of the vineyards, or, again, the fact that it was imported by monks from Burgundy in the 12th century (hence the term Ruscè, which would become Ruchè). The latter theory has been disproved by recent research into its DNA, which shows that it is distantly related to two typical northern Italian varieties: Croatina and Malvasia aromatica di Parma, which has now disappeared. Its obscure origin makes it full of fascination and mystery, also in the light of the different and in some ways enigmatic way in which its name is pronounced, depending on where its admirers come from. A Rebus, then, as its label says. The Ruchè grape grows on the dry, calcareous soils of a restricted area of Basso Monferrato (seven municipalities led by Castagnole Monferrato, from which the DOCG takes its name) and produces wines of limited quantity and high quality, characterised by moderate acidity and soft tannins.
Harvest: third week of September, the selection and hand harvesting occur in the morning to deliver the grapes to the winery in the afternoon, so that they arrive fresh and in optimal condition to start the vinification process.
Vinification: after crushing and destalking the grapes, the must is sent to vertical temperature-controlled stainless tanks. The alcoholic fermentation and maceration last around 5 days at a constant temperature of 22 °C. During the maceration, a lot of rotative pumping over is carried out to maintain the must constantly in contact with the grape skins.
Ageing: the malolactic fermentation takes place immediately after the alcoholic fermentation at a temperature of 18°C. After the required racking to clear the wine from the sediments, the wine is aged in stainless steel tanks for about 7 months and then bottled. The wine remains 3 months of bottle ageing prior to be released.
Pairings: Risotto, Guinea fowl, rolled meat, rabbit at Ligurian style, roast beef, aged cheeses.
Serving temperature: 15°C
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