Comm. G.B. Burlotto Verduno Pelaverga DOC 2015

burlottopelaverga

Estate: The Burlotto estate was founded in the mid-1800’s by Giovan Battista Burlotto [called “il Commendatore” by friends and family]. A pioneering winemaker in the region, he was one of the very first in Barolo to sell his wines in bottle [rather than a cask or demijohn]. He was the official provider of wine to the Royal House of Savoy, and put his tiny village of Verduno, in Piedmont, on the map as a region of high quality wines. Following his death in 1927, the estate “faded into obscurity”.

Today, G.B Burlotto’s great-great-grandson Fabio Alessandria has not only revitalized the 15 hectare estate, but has become renowned as an artisanal, traditionalist winemaker. In addition to his stunning Barolo, he is reviving and safeguarding indigenous grapes such as Freisa and Pelaverga. His character driven wines are famous for their purity and elegance.

The Verduno Pelaverga DOC is one of the smallest DOC regions in all of Italy. Currently, there are just over 10 winemakers and only 18 hectares of vines dedicated to the cultivation of the rare Pelaverga grape.

Winemaking: The estate is organic but not certified. Striving to be as natural as possible minimal intervention is observed in both the vineyards and cellar. The high elevation of the vineyards along with the cool climate “provides for wines of finesse, bright acidity and soaring aromatics”.

Tasting Notes: Bright transparent ruby in colour with aromas of strawberries and warm summer earth. Fresh strawberry and raspberry glide atop an herbaceous streak, spicy pink peppercorn highlights the earthy, dry finish. Friendly, engaging and easy drinking, this is fantastic on its own and versatile at the table.

100% Pelaverga
Verduno Pelaverga DOC
Italy
Bottled by Burlotto Marina
14% Alcohol
$17 [average price]
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Maero Colline Saluzzesi Pelaverga 2009

 

I have never seen a Pelaverga in a wine shop, and most wine books don’t mention the indigenous, obscure Italian grape at all. So I was very enthusiastic when a few months back a bottle of Maero Colline Saluzzesi Pelaverga 2009 arrived in my “Explorer” wine club from one of my favourite wine shops in NYC. Last night as the snow fell I prepared decadent mac with many cheeses for dinner and happily gave it a pour. More than 1000 years ago the monks of Saint Colombano began cultivating Pelaverga in the Saluzzo region of northwest Italy.  The grape was praised by Renaissance sommeliers for its “delicate mouthfeel and mesmerizing aromas.  Today it is experiencing something of its own renaissance as a few passionate producers are revitalizing it. This Pelaverga originates from a small, traditional winery and vineyard owned by Natale Fontan-Gole, an independent grape-grower and winemaker. He farms the Vigna Terre Rosse vineyard organically and applies his own personally made homeopathic treatments to the vines.

 

Transparent brick garnet in colour, after decanting for about 30 minutes aromas of strawberry, cherry and sun on warm bricks radiated from the glass. Dried cherry and bright cranberry flavours joined smooth leather elements and a pleasant astringency in the light to medium body. Dried herbs and earthy, iron minerals carried the finish along. Rustic and unassuming, this is a captivating and uncommon companion with dinner.

 

100% Pelaverga
Colline Saluzzesi/Piedmont
Italy
Produced & Bottled at the source by Imbottigliato All’Origine da Emidio Maero Azienda Agricola in Castellar
12% Alcohol
$22
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