A month ago, I told you about the Vandelli brothers, who run the Ca’Berti estate in the ancient Etruscan town of Levizzano Rangone (just southwest of Modena in the Apennine foothills). The brothers tend to over 75 acres of vineyards and orchards that have been in their family for five generations. I discovered their winery while exploring Lambrusco country in Emilia-Romagna in Fall 2013. One of the red bubbly wines being made with the hand-harvested fruit is the delicious Robusco…another is this one, their equally delicious Semisecco!
Made entirely from Lambrusco Grasparossa grapes—remember over 60 different grape varieties can be used in the production of Lambrusco—this dark wine has a gorgeous fruit nose, redolent of plums and purple grapes. On the palate, there’s a touch of sugar, but it blends so perfectly with the great acid you wouldn’t know it. The winemaker does a short maceration of must on skins, giving the wine an appealing if slightly astringent finish.
It’s gorgeous with food. Because it “reads” dry, it’s perfect with all the rich, Emilian things that are so great with Lambrusco…salumi, hard cheese, lasagna, meaty pastas. But that touch of sugar in the background impels me to suggest savory dishes that also have a hint of sweetness to them: I think we’re looking at a killer wine for meaty Asian foods with a little sugar (Peking duck, satay, Indian curries with chutney on the side, etc.)