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Flashcards in Northern Italy Deck (58)
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Where is Piedmont and what is its climate?

Piedmont is in the northwest corner of Italy.  

Its climate is moderate Continental.


What are the primary black/red grapes used in Piedmont?

  • Nebbiolo
  • Barbera (most planted)
  • Dolcetto


What are the 2 most important red DOCGs of Piedmont?

  1. Barolo DOCG
  2. Barbaresco DOCG


What is the only red grape allowed in Barolo and Barbaresco?



What is the aging requirement for Barolo?


  • 3 years of aging, 18 months of which have to be in oak

NOTE: while the textbook states "3 years" as Barolo's aging requirement the exact minimum aging requirement is 38 months, not 36.  See here and here for verification.



What is the aging requirement for Barbaresco?


  • 2 years, 9 months of which must be in oak

NOTE: while the textbook states "2 years" of minimum aging for Barbaresco, the actual minimum aging requirement is 26 months, not 24.  See here and here for verification.


If a bottle of Barolo has just "Barolo" on it, where can the grapes come from that go into that wine?


The grapes can come from any of the several villages that make up the Barolo DOCG.


If the grapes for a Barolo come from just one village or just one vineyard, what appears on the label?

You'll see Barolo + name of village (e.g. Serralunga d'Alba, La Morra) or Barolo + name of cru (e.g. Villero, Francia).



What are 2 moderating influences in Piedmont?

  1. Pò River (south)
  2. Lake Maggiore (north)


Is Nebbiolo an early or late ripener?

Nebbiolo is a late ripener.

Note the pale color (Nebbiolo is thin skinned but packed with tannins and acidity):


What is the first red grape to ripen in Piedmont?


Note the purple color:


What is the white grape in Gavi DOCG?

100% Cortese


Which mountains create a rain shadow in Piedmont, protecting the region from northern winds?

The Alps


What are the weather threats in Piedmont?

  • summertime hail
  • fog, which can lead to underripe grapes or rot


What are the 2 primary white grapes in Piedmont?

  • Moscato (most planted)
  • Cortese


Are there any IGPs or IGTs in Piedmont?

No, Piedmont has only DOCs and DOCGs.


What is the altitude range for vineyards in Barolo?

Which direction do the most important vineyards in Barolo face?


Most vineyards in Barolo face south.


What is the altitude range for vineyards in Barbaresco?


Lower altitude means Nebbiolo ripens earlier in Barbaresco, making Barbaresco usually a bit fruitier than traditional Barolo.


What DOCG can a wine use if all the Cortese grapes come from the village of Gavi?

Gavi di Gavi DOCG

Light body, high acid, citrus, pear/apple aromas


Barbera d'Alba is a DO__.

Barbera d'Asti is a DO__.

Barbera d'Alba DOC

Barbera d'Asti DOCG


Which Dolcetto DOC is generally viewed as the one making better Dolcetto?

Dolcetto d'Alba DOC


Veneto lies on what sea?

The Adriatic

Venice is in the eastern part of the Veneto.


What lake is on Veneto's western border?

How does this lake influence the winegrowing area around it?

Lake Garda

Breezes off the lake cool down vineyards in the western portion of the Veneto.


What is the main red grape in Valpolicella DOC and Amarone della Valpolicella DOCG?


It has a profile of sour cherry and high acidity.


Grapes grown on the valley floor in Valpolicella use which DOC?

Grapes grown in the foothills of Valpolicella use which DOC?

Valley floor: Valpolicella DOC

Foothills: Valpolicella Classico DOC

Valpolicella Classico, like Soave Classico, is located in the foothills; both have soils made of limestone, clay, and volcanic rock.


What are the 2 styles of wines in Veneto made using the passito process?

  1. Amarone della Valpolicella DOCG
  2. Recioto della Valpolicella DOCG


When a winemaker knows they're going to use the passito process, when do they harvest the grapes and when do they start fermenting them?

Harvested early to retain high acidity

Ferment the grapes after they've dried indoors, which takes months, so fermentation doesn't start until mid-winter.


How is Valpolicella Ripasso made?

Fresh, just-fermented Valpolicella DOC wine is poured over drained but unpressed skins left over from Amarone or Recioto production; both are racked into a different container where a secondary alcoholic fermentation occurs giving the Valpolicella Ripasso more structure and richness.


Recioto della Valpolicella is made with fresh, semi-dried, or fully dried grapes?

Recioto della Valpolicella is made with semi-dried grapes, which where dried on straw mats prior to fermentation.

There is still so much sugar in these semi-dried grapes that fermentation stops naturally.


Recioto della Valpolicella wines are dry, semi-sweet, or sweet?

Recioto della Valpolicella wines are semi-sweet to sweet.

They're also high in alcohol, high in tannins, and full bodied.