Lambrusco a Frothy Frizzante Red Wine
This week we are exploring something very special – Lambrusco…
- a variety of wine grape grown in the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy.
- a sparkling red wine made from the Lambrusco grape.
Yes, a sparkling Red Wine! And we are going to be tasting Lambrusco from the most prestigious family from the Emilia-Romagna region, Cleto Chiarli. One and a half century of wines, one family, millions of bottles produced, appreciation from all over the world, eagerness for a never-ending improvement. This is how ‘Cleto Chiarli’ was born. It is more than an ordinary winery; it is a world where to produce excellent wines, the ideal cradle where to get the best out of Lambrusco grapes. For over one hundred years Cleto Chiarli has been making wine with only a short pause for two years during WWII. From Generation to generation this winery has strived to be the best and it’s all from the passion and vision of the Patriarch. Not only are we trying some of the best Lambrusco we get to learn all about it from our dear friend Dawn Gaudini. Dawn and I have been friends for 12 plus years. Nicknamed the Madonna Del vino by the Italian producers and families that she has been representing for over 30+ years.
In 1860 Cleto Chiarli decided to close his ‘osteria’ down in order to dedicate himself only to the making of Lambrusco, which until then he had been producing for his customers in the ‘Artigliere’. This proved to be a momentous turning point which would indicate the direction to follow for the future generations, and which would bring about nothing short of a revolution in the selling of Lambrusco. At that time, Chiarli realised the importance of starting to sell bottled wine and he developed the basic techniques needed to produce this unique product, which becomes sparkling only inside the bottle through a natural process of re-fermentation.
At the beginning of the 1970s Giorgio’s sons, Mauro and Anselmo, started to work for Chiarli, with the former actively concentrating on the production of Lambrusco, the latter on sales management. Towards the end of the 1970s, other wineries in the Emilia Romagna region start to produce great amounts of Lambrusco, and its quality is therefore compromised in order to follow consumers’ tastes and the trend of new markets. This leads to the creation of a fashionable wine with characteristics which are very far from its ancient and genuine qualities. After a few years, however, as expected of fleeting caprices, this trend comes to an end, leaving a negative aura to Lambrusco. It is therefore necessary to improve its image by reintroducing standards concerning both general quality and specific features which truly show the nature of this wine.
The Chiarli family therefore roll up their sleeves and start an intense and important work of requalification and valorisation of Lambrusco. This includes a complete reshaping of the vineyards in order to make them more practical and functional towards the Company’s new needs; the ‘historic vineyards’ were updated, the greater part of the farming started to be done with the latest mechanical innovations, even better clones were selected and vineyards growing in unsuitable areas were extirpated. Alongside these innovations, new machines to produce Sorbara and Grasparossa Lambrusco were acquired to further improve its qualities. These proved to be crucial investments which would be key in the overall Company’s development in future years.
After many years of success, Mauro and Anselmo decided in 2002 to start a very ambitious project: the building of a brand-new winery, which would have a new state-of-the-art production line, fitted with the latest technology, thus enabling them to process the grapes grown in the Chiarli estates in order to produce Lambrusco of the highest quality. And thanks to this state of the art facility we now bring you the wine…
Cleto Chiarli “Vecchia Modena” Lambrusco di Sorbara doc $19 on Sale $16
- Deep rosé colour, with clear fragrances of strawberry and brushwood. Its taste is fresh, pervasive, mineral, and at the same time velvety and surprisingly pleasant. Dynamic. Grape variety: 100% Lambrusco di Sorbara Accompaniments: Pasta, tortellini, boiled meat and typical cuisine from Modena. Service temp.: Cool (10°-12° C.)
Cleto Chiarli Brut di Noir Rose Spumante $19 on sale $16
- Violet-shaded rosé, delicate, well-structured, with intense fragrances of strawberries and raspberries and a lively round taste. Seductive. Grape variety: Grasparossa, Pinot Nero. Accompaniments: Excellent as an aperitif, and ideal for elegant dinners; it also goes very well with desserts, strawberry and fruit salads. Service temp.: Cool (10°-12° C.)
Cleto Chiarli Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro Vigneto Cialdini DOC $19 on sale $16
- Deep colour which foreshadows intense, but never excessive scents. It combines roundness and austerity, telling in detail of its terroir. Passionate. Grape variety: Grasparossa. Accompaniments: Pasta, charcuterie and, in general, traditional dishes from Emilia. Service temp.: Cellar Temperature (14°-16° C.)
Cleto Chiarli “Centenario” Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro Amabile $14 on sale $12
- Rich scent, intense, very lively, with appealing roughness. Outgoing. Grape variety: Grasparossa. Accompaniments: Pasta, roasts and seasoned cheese. Service temp.: Cellar Temperature (14°-16° C.)
*Prices good until Tuesday 6/27
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It is the exclusive export of Agaveros Unidos de Amatitán and its second- generation, family-owned-and-operated Rancho Miravalle estate. Rancho Miravalle has created exceptional tequila for nearly 20 years. Made with 100% pure Weber Blue Agave grown in dedicated fields of the Jalisco valleys, we harvest by hand. Then we roast the organic agave in traditional clay hornos to ensure authenticity and depth of flavor.
We start sippin’ and tastin’ at 4pm. Hope you can make it! Tag your pics #pickitupatpearl so we can CHEERS!
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