The region of Emilia Romagna in northern Italy is known for lambrusco, but if you're a lover of sangiovese, then this region needs to be on top of your list as well. A large amount of the vitis vinifera wines hail from the southern part of the region, known as Romagna. This area is more coastal and provides a hillier landscape for grape growing.
|The countryside of Romagna by Enrico Strocchi|
Sangiovese di Romagna
There are a couple DOC's from Romagna that are primarily based on the sangiovese grape, Sangiovese di Romagna and Sangiovese di Romagna Superiore. Here, sangiovese rules! The wines are made of at least 85% sangiovese with an additional 15% other grape varieties. It's believed that the name sangiovese originated from Monte Giove, a hill near Sant'Angelo di Romagna. The wines tasted of this area were named Sangue del Giove, “Blood of Giove”, and later what we know today as sangiovese.
|Vineyards of Romagna by Andrea|
How does sangiovese di romagna differ from those of Tuscany?
The sangiovese produced in Tuscany tends to be more rustic, but it's hard to just generalize when it varies based on the producer. The acidity in the sangiovese of Romagna is lower than those of Tuscany, but with higher alcohol and tannins that are sweeter. The sangiovese of Romagna still has juicy, cherry flavors along with herbal qualities. According to the Consorzio Vini di Romagna, sangiovese compares to the people of Romagna “frank and rough while also gentle and open”. Can any locals attest to this?
If you aren't much of a fan of high acid wines and very drying tannins you may want to try a sangiovese di romagna and compare it to Tuscany to find out for yourself. You may find a new favorite! Let me know what you discover.