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HOW IS NEBBIOLO FROM VALTELLINA  DIFFERENT THAN FROM THE LANGHE?

The list of DOC and DOCG wines made from Nebbiolo in Piemonte is long. These include Barolo, Barbaresco, Roero, Gattinara, Ghemme etc. Rarely does Nebbiolo have so much power and personality outside of Piemonte. However, the only other main wine regions/appellations known for producing high quality wines from this grape are Valle d’Aosta and Valtellina from Lombardy. In Lombardy the Nebbiolo grape is actually called Chiavennasca. So how does Nebbiolo differ from Valtellina compared to the Langhe in Piemonte?

TERROIR – ALWAYS ABOUT TERROIR!

LANGHE 

The Langhe is in the lower part of Piemonte where Nebbiolo benefits from a milder continental climate. The maximum altitude is slightly above 500 meters above sea level. The soils of compact calcareous marls and sand, along with being planted on South facing slopes give Nebbiolo a ripening advantage which give you fuller and rounder wines overall.

VALTELLINA

Valtellina is actually Lombardy’s northernmost winegrowing region! Because of Nebbiolo’s long ripening season, it is especially necessary here for the grapes to be planted on South facing slopes. However, rather than being on slopes of rolling hills, the vines are planted on steep terraced hills at the very foot of the Alps which can reach up to 900 meters above sea level. The rocky soils are composed more of granitic sand, schist and alluvial deposits. The resulting wine from Valtellina has all the beautiful aromatic characteristics with less structure and power compared to Nebbiolo from the Langhe. The body is usually lighter and the wine is generally more approachable than Barolo and Barbaresco.

REGULATIONS

BAROLO

Barolo DOCG must be coming from an area including 11 villages with 100% Nebbiolo.

Minimum aging requirement is 38 months of which 18 must be in oak.

BARBARESCO

Barbaresco DOCG must be coming from a small area of just 3 main villages and made from 100% Nebbiolo grapes.

Minimum aging requirement is 26 months of which 9 must be in oak.

VALTELLINA SUPERIORE

Valtellina Superiore DOCG is an area with 5 main sub-zones and made from at least 90% Nebbiolo grapes. Minimum aging requirement is 24 months of which 12 must be in oak.

CLUB VALTELLINA FEATURED – SANDRO FAY

Sandrofay is a family run winery who practices what is called heroic winemaking because of the challenging steep slopes they must work on. Sandro Fay started the winery in 1973 and is now run by his two children.

SANDROFAY VALTELLINA SUPERIORE DOCG RISERVA CARTERIA 2016

From the sub-zone Valgella from the vineyard called Carteria. The wine is aged for 12 months in big barrels and followed by 18 months in the bottle.

We highly recommend wines from this estate!