CORTESE ALTO MONFERRATO D.O.C.
The “Cortese dell’Alto Monferrato” represents one of the most important dry white wine from Piedmont. Even if it’s not so popular as the Red and Muscat wines, which are the pride of this region, it’s an excellent table wine. It is produced in the Upper Monferrato, in the area closed between the rivers Bormida and Scrivia with the Ligurian Apennine behind. The “Cortese”, one of the vines with white grape most typical of the entire Piedmont, comes from these hills. It was already known in the 18° century. Furthermore, its resistance to illnesses and bad weather, makes this variety a widespread vine, especially in the area called Western Oltrepo’ (area behind the Po river).
GRAPE. 100% Cortese.
GENERAL DESCRIPTION. Documents from as early as the late 1800s attest to the presence of the Cortese grape in various areas of Piedmont, while today the predominent production is in the communes of Capriata d’Orba, Francavilla Bisio, and Gavi. Although it may not enjoy the same fame as our Region’s “noble reds,” it is much prized as an aperitif wine and as a partner to antipasti and lighter first courses.
SENSORY PROFILE. Appearing a luminous straw yellow with subtle greenish highlights, Ciarea is distinguished by an appealing, very fragrant bouquet that is fresh and fruit-rich, offering pronounced, elegant notes of fresh fruit and wildflowers. Although it is fairly delicate, typical of Cortese, it exhibits superb balance and good structure.
VINIFICATION AND MATURATION. The grapes are hand-harvested in September; they are then gently pressed, and the must inoculated with cultured yeasts (Saccaromices cerevisiae). The initial fermentation is at ca. 18°C in stainless steel tanks. At the end of winter, the wine is cold-stabilised to avoid sediment formation, and the wine is bottled in the spring following harvest.
ALCOHOL: 12.50% vol.
CLOSURE: Natural cork 24 x 40
SERVING TEMPERATURE: 8-10°C
RECOMMENDED GLASS: Fairly large tulip-shaped glass.
CELLARABILITY: 2-3 years
SERVING SUGGESTIONS. Ciarea makes an elegant partner to fish antipasti, vegetable flans and fries, lighter first courses, frittatas, soft cheeses, and, of course, is the ideal aperitif wine, particularly in spring or summer.