The Yoda of Lambrusco

Two months ago I had the opportunity to spend a few days in Castelvetro, a hamlet south of Modena that is known for Lambrusco Grasparossa, generally the most full bodied and tannic of Lambrusco varieties. Most producers use steel tank fermentation or Charmat method, but a handful are doing a metodo classico or Champagne method of Lambrusco, which induces a secondary fermentation in the bottle. The Agriturismo Cavaliera, in Solignano Vecchio, and incidentally where I stayed, is one of them. But one of the motives I had to stay in Castelvetro was to meet the elusive Vittorio Graziano, whose metodo classico Lambrusco I first tried at a tasting at Via Emilia in New York City. It took a few e-mail exchanges and a few phone calls to arrange an afternoon visit and taste his Lambrusco in his cantina. At the source. Was it worth it? Certainly...to meet and talk wine and history and territory with Vittorio validated my travel. The wines I tasted that day were of the most recent vintage, 2010. They did not show as well as his wines from an earlier vintage did in New York back in March 2011. But Vittorio has been making Lambrusco for a very long time and I look forward to tasting that 2010 vintage on another visit. Without further delay, I present a photo journey to the Yoda of Lambrusco, Vittorio Graziano:

                                      Told me his Ferrari was in the shop

                                      Vittorio's favorite spot

                                      Winemaking facility under the cloud


                                             Always a thrill to taste with a producer

                                                        Grazie Vittorio!

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