Cards of Wine

Sforzato (Italy)

Sforzato is a red Passito wine from Valtellina in Lombardia.

It is made from minimum 90% Nebbiolo grapes.

Typical Flavors


Strawberry
Strawberry
Cherry
Black
Cherry
Black Currant
Black
Currant
Blueberry
Blueberry

Blackberry
Black Berry
Plum
Plum
Violets
Violets
Spices
Spices

Oak added Flavors


Vanilla
Vanilla
Licorice
Licorice
Cinnamon
Cinnamon
Chocolate
Chocolate

Tobacco
Tobacco
Pepper
Pepper
Cloves
Cloves
Leather
Leather

Black berries, Cherry, and Plum are typical Sforzato flavors.

(Common in wines produced from Nebbiolo).

Profile

BODYFull
TANNINSMedium - High
FRUITMedium
ACIDITYMedium
Serving temperature:
17-18°C (63-64°F)

Food Pairing


Pasta
Pasta
Ham
Ham
Thai
Spicy Asian
Hamburger
Hamburger

Pork
Pork
Lamb
Lamb
Beef
Beef
Wild Boar
Wild Boar

Sforzato pairs well with many types of food.

Italian. Mediterranean. Sweet and Spicy Asian Food.

Pairing Suggestions

Excellent Pairing:
Savory Dishes. Rich Soups.
Acidic Sauces. Tomato Sauce.
Rich Pizza. Rich Pasta. Spaghetti Bolognese.
Spicy Soups. Chicken Teriyaki.
Rustic Stew. Pork Stew.
Stewed Meat with Mushrooms.
Lamb. Veal. Osso Buco.
Beef. Braised Ox. Grilled Steak.
BBQ. Roast Duck. Hamburger.
Game. Wild Boar. Deer. Venison.
Reindeer. Elk. (in Scandinavia).

Cheese:
Mature Cheese.
Pecorino. Parmigiano. Manchego. Cheddar.

The Ideal Glass

The Bordeaux glass is perfect for a good bodied red wine.

It is taller than other red wine glasses, and has a slimmer bowl.

The large size of the glass allows the fruit bouquet to develop. It smooths out rough edges, plays down tannins, and allows the wines to achieve balance.

The slimmer bowl sends the wine directly to the back of the mouth for maximum taste.

Sforzato di Valtellina

The appassimento method (raisinating grapes before vinifying) is an old tradition in northern Italy. Drying concentrates sugar and acid in the grapes.

The Sforzato wine of Valtellina (Sfursat in local dialect) was the first Italian dry red passito with a DOCG status. It is produced from Nebbiolo grapes laid out on straw mats to dry in ventilated cellars known as "fruttai" (fruit stores). After drying, ready for crushing, the grapes have lost 40% of the weight and developed new aromatic flavors.

Just like Sforzato, Amarone, and Valpolicella Ripasso, many Italian wine producers include from 10% to 20% dried grapes in their wines. In Valtellina, some producers use dried grapes in Valtellina Superiore (DOCG).

Italian DOC(G)

Italian wine labels was introduced in 1963. They were designed to copy the French AOC/AC system.

DOC (Denominazione di Origine Controllata) regulates production areas, grape varieties, alcohol levels, and vinification techniques.

DOCG (Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita) is the highest classification.

Strict rules defines grape varieties, yield limits, grape ripeness, winemaking procedures, barrel and bottle maturation, and tasting procedures. Each bottle must have a numbered government seal.

Valtellina DOC(G)

Valtellina produces 3 categories of Nebbiolo wines:

Rosso di Valtellina
DOC 1968
Minimum 90% Nebbiolo (Chiavennasca)
Maximum 10% other Lombardia grapes
Maximum harvest 10 tonnes/ha
Aged minimum 6 months
Minimum alcohol 11%
Valtellina Superiore
DOCG 1998
Minimum 90% Nebbiolo (Chiavennasca)
Maximum 10% other Lombardia grapes
Maximum harvest 8 tonnes/ha
Aged minimum 2 years (3 for Riserva) minimum 1 year in barrel
Minimum alcohol 12%
Sforzato di Valtellina
DOCG 2003
Amarone style dry passito wine
Minimum 90% Nebbiolo (Chiavennasca)
Maximum 10% other Lombardia grapes
Aged minimum 20 months between barrel and bottle
Minimum alcohol 14%

About Valtellina

"A valley surrounded by high and terrible mountains. But they make really powerful wines." was the summary provided by Leonardo da Vinci in his sketch collection "Codice Atlantico".

Valtellina is a valley in the Lombardy region of northern Italy on the border to Switzerland. It is one of Italy's smallest wine regions, with dramatic high altitude vineyard landscapes, angled as solar panels to the south, on steep slopes and tiny terraces.

Most of the wines in the region are red wines produced on the grape Chiavennasca, a local Nebbiolo varity named after the city Chiavenna.

Italy's greatest grape Nebbiolo, has the local name Chiavennasca in Lombardia, Spanna in northern Piemonte, and Picotener in Val d’Aosta.

Valtellina Wine Road

Valtellina Strada del Vino is a 70 km panoramic road through the terraced vineyards where "Nebbiolo delle Alpi" is made.

The road runs from Ardenno to Tirano in the valley.

On the road, there are wineries that provides wine tasting, guided tours, and the possibility to stay overnight, discover traditional dishes "like grandma used to", while drinking local Valtellina wines, and meat the locals who work in the mountains.

Lombardia (Lombardy)

Lombardia, in the north of Italy, is one of the richest regions in Europe.

The capital Milano is the largest metropolitan area in Italy with about 10 million inhabitants.

Lombardia is blessed with spectacular lakes: Como, Maggiore, Garda, and Iseo.

Lombardia has 5 DOCG Regions.

Alcohol can be addictive. Drink in moderation.

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