When you think of Piemonte, you probably (logically) think Nebbiolo. However, Piemonte is home to a number of ancient varietals as well- one of my favorite being the Nebbiolo di Dronero grape from Saluzzo.
Map showing the region of Piemonte
Map showing Saluzzo, home to Nebbiolo di Dronero & Marco Giordanino!
The other day I was reminded of a great wine I have always loved… Marco Giordanino’s “Saluces”, a mono-varietal wine made from the indigenous grape Nebbiolo di Dronero (also known as “Chatus”). This grape makes a wine that looks nothing like typical Piemontese Nebbiolo. It is darker, richer in color and with more brambly blackberry on the nose. There is a very regal elegance to the wine, which speaks to a deft hand with a limited amount of oak in the cellar. The wine is fleshy, and showcases a beautiful long acidity that pairs well with hearty, grilled meats and strong cheeses.
In fact, we enjoyed a bottle of the 2003 with a beautiful veal chop at CARNEVINO, where they offer this wine by the glass (although, once you taste this, one glass would never suffice!).
Nebbiolo di Dronero has a long and quirky history, stemming from France, where the grape is known as Chatus in parts of France. Italian documentation has been discovered proving that Nebbiolo di Dronero has been cultivated in the foothills of the Alps since 1300!