Wines (and some other drinks) of Giro d’Italia 2017. Stage 10: Foligno — Montefalco

I wanted action on Sunday. But I did not want trouble because a police officer had parked his motorcycle on the wrong side of the road. But the attack from Nairo Quintana, this was what we had been waiting for. Today, the question is if Nairo Quintana’s advantage is enough to stay ahead of riders like Tom Dumoulin, Thibaut Pinot and Vincenzo Nibali  after the time trial.

The riders do not get a soft start after the rest day, at least not the riders with GC ambitions or rides who want to win the stage. The cannot take it easy in the beginning, to get the body going again. For domestics with no indiviual ambitions and not very much to fight for, it may be what Jens Voigt once called a “semi rest day”. They have to finish within he time limit, without using too much power.

Usually it is hard to find wine along a rather short time trial. But today the major part of the stage is within the Montefalco district. We enter Montefalco when we get the first intermediary time.

Montefalco is the district for one of Italy’s top wines. Montefalco DOC include reds made mainly from Sangiovese, and whites made from Grechetto.

But the really interesting wine is Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG. This is the jewel of the district, and one of Italy’s rather unknown gems. Sagrantino is Umbria’s own grape, even though its origin is unknown. It is a small, thick skinned grape with much of everything: Colour, acid, tannins and sugar. It gives dark and powerful wine with great depht and flavour, tanninic, high in acidity and alcohol.

The original Montefalco Sagrantino was a passioto, a sweet dessert wine made from dried grapes. It is regarded as one of Italy’s better dessert wines. A dry Montefalco Sagrantino did not hit the market before 1972.

A Sagrantino must be stored for at least 30 months. For a dry Sagrantino, at least 12 of these months must be in oak barrels. Montefalco Sagrantino is said to be a good alternative to Barolo. Give it a try. It should be the wine of today.

Italian Wines 2016

Italian Wines is published yearly by Gambero Rosso. This is a detailed guide to Italian Wines. 22 000 wines from 2 400 producers are listed in the book. If you want to fine the best wines from the various regions of Italy, this is your guide. This is a type of book I usually use when I am visiting producers, to find the producers to visit.

The book is available in a paper edition and a Kindle edition. One year, I bought the Kindle edition. But for this kind of book, I prefer the paper version. It is available from Amazon UK on paper and for Kindle. And from Amazon US in paperback and as Kindle edition.

Wines (and some other drinks) of Giro d'Italia 2017

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