I'm honored monthly to be invited by Snooth to share a wine based on each month's theme. I'm joined by a very talented group of wine bloggers, sommeliers, writers and connoisseurs. The theme for December was a Holiday Sparkling Bottle Pick List.
When I think of sparkling wine in Italy I immediately gravitate toward Lombardy or the Veneto with prosecco. I've written about Lombardy in the past including a couple articles on Franciacorta. I've tried some prosecco recently that I'll be sharing in an upcoming article, but my selection for Snooth's list was the Barone Pizzini Franciacorta Brut Animante NV (non vintage).
|Franciacorta by Takashi Yamaoku|
Franciacorta is located along the shores of Lago Iseo. What makes the sparkling wines of Franciacorta so unique? The sparkling wines here are made in the classic method, or metodo classico. This is the same way in which Champagne is produced. Franciacorta became a DOCG in 1995 and at that point was separated from the still wines labeled under the Terre di Franciacorta DOC. The primary grapes used in producing a Franciacorta are chardonnay, pinot bianco and pinot nero. The difference between this non-vintage and the vintage wines of Franciacorta is that non-vintage must be aged at least 18 months where vintage wines are aged a minimum of 30 months.
Barone Pizzini's winery was established in 1870, but released it's first bottle of Franciacorta in 1971. According to Barone Pizzini, the “Animante was created to commemorate a long and pioneering journey that honors Barone Pizzini's leadership in the organic evolution of Franciacorta”. They are the “first organic grower and winemaker in Franciacorta”. Animante stems from the word anima, meaning soul, that represents the winery's respect for winemaking and the land in which these wines are produced. The Barone Pizzini Animante is produced from 25 vineyards all delivering a variety of different characteristics that are blended together to produce a wine that shows the “soul” of the land. It's comprised of 78% chardonnay, 18% pinot nero and 4% pinot bianco.
You can see my full review on the Barrone Pizzini Franciacorta Brut Animante on the Snooth site for Holiday Sparkling Bottle Pick List.
Have you tried the sparkling wines of Franciacorta?