Winemaking in Molise
Molise is a region of Southern Italy bordering Abruzzo, Puglia, Lazio and Campania. It is the second smallest region of Italy (Aosta Valley is the smallest). Agriculture, especially wine and olive oil, plays a major role in the economy of Molise. The region is very hilly and the climate varies from continental to maritime. The soil consists mostly of clay loam but the terroir can also be morainic. The annual production of Molise wine is only 400.000hl and because of the limited supply wine from Molise is often harder to find than wines from other Italian regions. There are currently only four DOC wines produced in Molise – Biferno DOC, Molise DOC, Pentro di Isernia DOC and Tintilia DOC.
Trebbiano Toscano, Malvasia, Falanghina and Bombino are the most widely planted white grape varieties. Bombino plays a crucial role for wine making in Southern Italy. It is found in many blends and often used to mass-produce cheap wine. Montepulciano, Aglianico and to some extend Sangiovese are considered to be the most important red grape varieties. Some of the red wines are similar to the ones produced in the Basilicata, Abruzzo and Marche regions.
Borgo di Colloredo
The estates of Borgo di Colloredo are located on the hills of the narrow Adriatic coastal line of Molise. It is one of the more well-known wineries, which also exports its wines abroad and overseas For three generations the Di Giulio family has been making wine in Molise. The winery’s flagship line, Giornia, consists of a red, a white and a rosé wine. Borgo di Colloredo grows mostly Montepulciano, Trebbiano Toscano and Aglianico grapes.
Tasting Notes: 2006 Gironia Rosso Riserva – Biferno DOC
Gironia Rosso Riserva is a blend of 80% Montepulciano and 20% Aglianico. In Basilicata and Campania Aglianico is rarely blended with other grape varieties but in Molise Aglianico is used to give Montepulciano some more structure. After a fermentation in stainless steel tanks the wine aged 24 months in parts in French oak barrels and in parts in small barriques. The wine is classified as Biferno Rosso Riserva DOC. Gironia Rosso Riserva was first produced in 1995.
Prior to drinking the wine was decanted for roughly one hour.
In the glass, deep ruby red color with intense garnet hues. 13.5% was the label listed alcohol by volume.
On the nose, there was heavy aroma of plums, cherries, some black pepper, a bit of tobacco and raisins as well as a hint of nutmeg.
In the mouth, Gironia Rosso Riserva was dry, soft and quite mineralic. Medium acidity, and great structure. Full-bodied and good harmony between nose and palate with flavors of red berries and cherries. Pleasing, mellow tannins. Stunning, never-ending finish.
In Munich a bottle of Borgo di Colloredo Giornia Rosso Riserva sells for around 18€. Very good wine for this price. If are looking for a wine from Molise to try then I highly recommend you to try this wine. For my personal taste the acidity was a little too strong and considering that this is 2006 vintage I assume that younger vintages have an even stronger acidity so keep that in mind. Nevertheless, I will definitely rebuy this wine as long as its available. Gironia Rosso Riserva pairs very well with a juicy Florentine steak and some baked potatoes with rosemary.
I heard that Borgo di Colloredo only produces the Gironia Rosso Riserva in very good vintages. I tasted some wines from Molise at last year’s VinItaly but the majority of them where white wines so this was quite an experience. Gironia Rosso reminds me of a “blend” of two other wines: Montepulciano d’Abruzzo & Aglianico del Vulture.
Have you tried wine from Molise before? Let me know in the comment section below.