When you think of Franciacorta, you think of one of the most famous Italian sparkling white wines. Some would mark it out as the largest domestic competitor for Prosecco. Regardless, it’s a name that’s become a byword for supreme quality, as the wine offers a stunning taste of the Lombardy region.
What you may not know is that there are some winemakers who have experimented with the original sparkling white wine formula to create a sparkling Rosé that’s every bit as stunning as the more famous variant of the wine. The best examples of this wine even carry their own DOCG classification, which should bring them to the instant attention of wine lovers who are searching for a new tipple to whet their palates.
With this review, we decided to take a closer look at this wonderful example of sparkling wine. But then the question became which producer should we put under the microscope. After a lot of consideration, we’ve decided to give that honour to Lo Sparviere. Let us explain exactly why after giving you a bit of information about the company and its history.
Deep in Brescia, in a land that’s as well known for its priories and abbeys as it is for its wines, Franciacorta hides away as one of the true gems of the Italian wine industry. With a winemaking tradition that dates back to the time of the Romans, this is a region that has as deep a history as any in all of Italy. For centuries, or even millennia, Franciacorta has been one of the places to go when you wanted to drink an example of a stunning wine.
Even without its enormous wine industry, the region is a true sight to behold for travellers. Those who visit are wowed by the rows upon rows of undulating hills, many of which have vineyards climbing almost to their peaks. These hills all slope down to the south, which is where you’ll find the plains that the region is also known for. It’s this unique topography that creates such an interesting environment for grapes to grow in. In fact, it plays a major role in determining the climate in which the grapes are grown.
Beyond this wonderfully natural scenery, Franciacorta also plays host to ancient villages, stunning mansions and a host of castles, villas, and churches, many of which date back over centuries.
We’re telling you all of this because it’s in precisely this environment that Lo Sparviere’s founders, the Berrata family, started their journey.
Owned by Gussalli Beretta and nestled deep within Monticelli Brusati, the company maintains 60 hectares of vineyards. Of these almost half are used to grow Pinor Noir and Chardonnay, the former of which is the sole grape used in the wine that we’ll be reviewing in this article.
The company’s cellars are centuries old, as they date all the way back to the 1500s. They also owe their name to the stunning eagle that you can find emblazoned on the coat of arms located above the fireplace in the company’s winery.
The estate villa is no longer a relic of a bygone era. Though it was always magnificent, extensive restoration work has allowed it to capture the glory that it held way back when it was first built. In the cellars below, the company’s wines are both made and matured beneath a stunning vaulted ceiling. In fact, there is not a single style of the company’s Franciacorta DOCGs that do not spend at least two years in these ancient cellars before they’re made available to consumers.
Beyond its history, the company separates itself due to its meticulous selection process. Each of the grapes used in its wines come directly from the estates that it owns, with the focus being on low-yield vines that produce only the highest quality of grape.
The aim here is to ensure that the wines maintain the quality that the brand has become known for. Low yields mean quality grapes that allow for finer running of the balance and an array of sensory qualities to be imbued into the company’s wines. Each is a perfect representation of the land that bore it, undiluted and made with a level of care that’s rare even among the top Italian producers.
Centuries of tradition and knowledge go into the creation of Lo Sparviere’s wines, though that does not mean that the company sacrifices modern viticultural tools. In fact, it’s on the cutting edge in this regard and it does an amazing job of combining time-proven winemaking practices with technological advancements designed to make its wines even better.
With all of that being said, we think it’s about time that we took a closer look at the Lo Sparviere Franciacorta Brut Rosè Monique.
Though you may think that it would be the colouring that’s the first thing to jump out at you with the Lo Sparviere Franciacorta Brut Rosè Monique, it’s actually the cascades of bubbles that make the biggest impression. Tons of them rise up from the bottom of the flute, creating a wonderful effect that leaves the drinker entranced.
Of course, you’ll will notice the colouring as you observe the bubbles. The wine has a salmon pink colouring that has just the slightest of coppery tones.
Thankfully, the wine does not smell of salmon when you bring it to the nose. Instead, you’ll spot notes of red berry and rosewater in the gorgeously floral bouquet. In fact, the aroma is so good that you may be tempted to allow the wine to sit in the glass for just a little bit longer before you finally take your first sip.
However, it’s to the taste that the wine truly excels itself. It’s a full-volumed wine that’s both generous and exceptionally well balanced. The perfect acidity lends the wine a freshness while still making room for the fruits that form the bulk of the tasting experience.
This is an exceptional example of sparkling Rosé and one that all Franciacorta lovers would do well to sample at some point.