Another Look at Lambrusco

A sparkling red for spring celebrations!


So the world of wine has changed, people are throwing the doors open and washing away all their preconceived notions about what makes wine good.  Right? Well then it must be time to introduce Lambrusco, yet again.

Lambrusco, for those who are not familiar with it, is a wine made from a specific family of grapes. That’s right, Lambrusco grapes. Now these grapes are absolutely delightful, grapey and fresh, so what could be better than serving them up with a little bit of sparkle and a hint of sweetness?

Typically Lambrusco is paired with Salumi and Prosciutto. It’s a great wine to bring along for a picnic in the Park on Sunday, but I’m going to let you in on a little secret.  Lambrusco is just right for Thanksgiving! It’s Festive, check. It’s got a little sweetness to go with the sweeter dishes of the Holiday table (or not), check.  And best of all, even the best bottles are affordable, check.

What to expect: Lambrusco

Lambrusco may be more famous as a wine style - slightly fizzy and slightly sweet - but it is also a grape, or more correctly, a family of grapes. The wines produced from Lambrusco tend to be quite fruity, with dark strawberry and cherry tones and a slight bitterness. They frequently have just a touch of tannin and bright acidity contributing to a round, fleshy mouthfeel.

Great Lambrusco can be Fruity and Serious

Medici Ermete Reggiano Solo Reggiano
Typically grapey on the nose with a touch of earth and spice. This enters the mouth with a sweet burst of blackberry and black cherry fruit that is supported by zesty acidity and just a hint of tannin. It's light, fresh and easy to like.

Lambrusco Vigneto Enrico Cialdini
This has a touch of violet on the nose with rich, fresh, sour cherry and black raspberry fruit. In the mouth it's got a whisper of sweetness, but is bursting with red plum and black raspberry fruit that is just a touch astringent and bitter, balancing the sweetness perfectly.

Mentioned in this article


  • Snooth User: grellot
    120874 3

    I tried my first lambrusco early this month on our 20th anniversary waiting for dinner ! "2008 Francesco Vezzelli Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro "Rive dei Ciliegi" ~$16
    Now I'm hooked!
    What a fun wine! And delicious with a hunk of reggiano Try it !!!

    Nov 24, 2009 at 7:06 PM

  • Lambrusco is truly a vertile wine! I have offered it on some of my wine lists in the past in warm weather months. Great call for a Thanksgiving offering. I may be dating myself, but in the past, Famiglia Cella marketed Lambrusco by a phrase "Chill a Cella". Outstanding entry level wine to introduce to people that may not be wine drinkers (as of yet).

    Nov 25, 2009 at 12:27 AM

  • Snooth User: cigarman168
    Hand of Snooth
    227923 333

    So Lambrusco should be sparkling wines?

    Nov 28, 2009 at 11:20 PM

  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 238,748

    Yes Lambrusco is almost always Sparkling wine, though it can be added to some wines to make them a bit fruitier. The Casteller of Trentino has Lambrusco as part of the blend and it's one of my favorite table wines. Becoming less and less common though since it's a cheap wine intended for daily consumption.

    Dec 11, 2009 at 11:16 AM

  • Snooth User: cigarman168
    Hand of Snooth
    227923 333

    Though not yet try it but I guess its taste will close to Brut Rose.

    Dec 12, 2009 at 2:21 AM

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