Exactly one week ago I made a very nice trip in the Montefalco surroundings. I could write page after page about Montefalco itself and you know what? I will. But not this time, because I am supposed to tell you about its Sagrantino.
For the readers who expect a review on the quality of this wine: send me your email address and I will get you in touch with a sommelier who knows all about it and can organize private tours to the Montefalco cantine as well.
This article is about the two cantine (wineries) I visited. There are way more in Umbria and several ways to visit them, but the tour I took had been organized by LaStrada del Sagrantino This office organizes various events throughout the year, so check their website.
We met on the Piazza del Comune in the centre of Montefalco where a comfortable small bus was waiting for us. It brought us to the first Cantina, Scacciadiavoli. It is named after a small village bordering the vineyards and means `drive out the devils.` In fact, that is one purpose the wine has served in ancient times. The winery became owned by the Pambuffetti family and is currently run by the fourth generation.
The cantina was built in 1884 expressly for processing the grapes into wine, and has not, like many others, originally been a residence or farm. The grapes arrive from the vineyards on the fourth floor, where they are selected and then brought to the third level to ferment and vinified in huge wooden or stainless steel barrels.
The Montefalco Rosso DOC rests for a year on the ground floor, the Sagrantino DOCG and Passito DOCG age for two years at the underground level.
After these interesting stories we arrived in the Sala del Degustazione to taste some of their wines and some bread, ham and cheese. No need to say it all tasted great.
After that the bus was waiting again and brought us to a smaller cantina, Moretti Omero. It has been founded after World War II and since then been a family farm. The pictures on the walls testify to a long and shared tradition of passion for the winery and growing olives. And so did the contagious enthousiasm of our guides that showed the property with pride.
The property contains 18.000 vines and 4500 olives, that are all exclusively grown by an organic method for over 20 years. This means that all the products are controlled and guaranteed1 by the ICEA2 and the AIAB3 . Moretti Omero has won several prizes and mentions.
We tasted their products of which I remember the Grecchetto and the Montefalco Rosso in particular. Though it has little to do with wine, I must mention the Insalata di farro (speltsalad) the owners prepared, for that was very comforting too.
After this pleasant visit we headed back to Montefalco again and I thought there are still a lot more cantine to discover, but these two certainly gave me a very pleasant afternoon.
2Instituto Certificazione Etica e Ambientale
3Associazione Italiana Agricoltura Biologica