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Brachetto d’Acqui is a sweet, pink-red sparkling wine produced in Piedmont, Italy. The wine was made famous in the 17th/18th century Commedia dell’Arte (Comedy in Masks). The character Gianduja di Gioan d’laduja (Giovanni of the jug, a.k.a. “the wino”) would swig this wine from a jug, and it supposedly kept up his fanciful spirits as long as he had it available.
The wine is kept in small production, produced near the town of Acqui Terme in 18 communes within the Asti province (most notably in Nizza Monferrato) and 8 within Alessandria (most notably Acqui). It’s based on the Brachetto grape, which producers limit to growing in only marl and calcareous clay soils.
The wine is macerated with skins for a period of about 2 days, which gives it the characteristic pinky-red hue, and allows some tannin balance to round out its naturally sweet flavors. It is bottled for about 3 months before release. This lightly sparkling wine has strawberry/raspberry, almost bubblegum-like candy flavors, with soft, rosey aromatics. It’s a delicate and romantic wine, suitable as an aperitif or with desserts. It’s an especially fantastic match with crème brulée and biscotti or macarons. ~Amanda Schuster
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