Sangiovese Di Romagna Wine Descriptions

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Sangiovese di Romagna is probably Emilia-Romagna’s best known wine, though for a long time likely for the wrong reasons. More on that in a bit. The story goes that the name of the grape originated from Sant’Angelo di Romagna at a Capuchin monastery. A noble guest was visiting the monastery and remarked at the quality of the wines made from the hillside Collis Jovis vineyards. When he asked what the wine was called, the name Sanguis di Jovis (Blood of Jupiter) was made up on the spot. From there it evolved from Sangue di Giove and finally to Sangiovese in the 18th century. Its popularity through the decades gave Sangiovese di Romagna the distinction of becoming the region’s first DOC in 1967. 

The large production zone stretches from the hills east of Bologna to the coast of Rimini, with various subzones inbetween. To be labeled as Sangiovese di Romagna, the wine must contain at least 85% Sangiovese and up to 15% of other grapes grown in the production zone. There are four styles:
*Sangiovese di Romagna - the catch all style, must be made from grapes in the production zone.
*Novello - “new wine.” 50% of grapes undergo carbonic maceration (like Beaujolais nouveau) with a minimum ABV of 11.5%. Meant to be consumed young. 
*Superiore - grapes are grown in what are considered the top areas of the production zone, the hills south of Via Emilia. These wines must reach a minimum 12% ABV. 
*Riserva - sourced from grapes grown at lower yields, aged at least two years before release. These wines are considered the most structured and ageworthy.
 
For a long time, Sangiovese di Romagna was the dilettante cousin of the more prestigious Sangioveses of Tuscany like Chianti Classico and Brunello. It has the same ripe cherry flavors, but with less of that tannic bite in most cases. This was the wine many red-checker table cloth Italian joints in the 60s, 70s and 80s served as their “house wine” in the straw carafe, usually a bit thin and unremarkable. But in more recent years, producers realized they had something to work with if they gave it a little love. These wines tend to have more perfumed qualities, and some herbal notes. One edge over Tuscany is they aren’t as acidic. Try one with your next pizza and see how well it matches the red sauce, bringing out the fruitier notes. 
– Description from Amanda Schuster

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