So yesterday I was talking about a trip the wife and I made to a local winery round here. I spent the whole post talking about the building, which I’m hoping wasn’t as boring as it sounds now I’m reading that back to myself! Let’s have a do at talking about the wines, eh?
It’s hard to call the area of Roero up and coming, because it’s been around for ages. But Roero DOC is a denomination that applies specifically to two grapes.
If you’re a wine-o, you’ll have heard of the first one; Nebbiolo. It’s this grape that makes the king and queen of Italian reds, Barolo and Barbaresco. In Roero it’s used to make Roero DOC. That basically just means it’s a protected red wine from Roero. And this isn’t just any old “Nebbiolo we couldn’t make into the other two so we’ll just churn it out”! This is a seriously well put together wine, with a depth and structure that sits in between the often strong Barolo, and the aromatic Barbaresco.
But it’s the white wine from Roero that I love and it’s all made with Arneis. Ask most people to think of Italian white wines you might get Pinot Grigio, or Soave, or Gavi, but nearly no-one would mention Arneis. Hugely unfair as it’s mix of acidity, citrus fruit, melon and peach, and minerality makes it, like most Italian wines, a perfect foodie wine.
The Demarie winery, where I spend yesterday morning doing tasting, has won Decanter awards for its still Arneis. It also produces a sparkling wine, done in the traditional method of Champagne and Cava, again made entirely from Arneis. Apparently it’s quite a thing in Roero. I can tell you now, it was quite a thing in that tasting room. Refreshing doesn’t even begin to describe it!
If you see a bottle of Arneis up on the shelf anywhere, give it a go. Even a half decent example will turn you into a convert!