Ezio Rivella: Rosso di Montalcino needs its “own personality”

In a YouTube video posted Sunday, February 27, 2011 by ITALIATV, Brunello producers association president Ezio Rivella spoke to interviewer Dario Pettinelli about the reasons behind a proposed change in the Rosso di Montalcino appellation that would allow for the use of grapes other than Sangiovese.

When the appellation was conceived, said Rivella, “attention was rightly focused on the fact that in order to maintain the standards of Brunello di Montalcino, some of the wine needed to be declassified to Rosso di Montalcino… In recent years, we have seen that this Rosso di Montalcino system was not working as it had in the past. And so we are facing this [issue by] preparing a marketing plan that will help us to relaunch Rosso di Montalcino as an independent wine — a wine that has its own personality. Because presenting the Rosso as the leftovers from Brunello was the wrong approach.”

Translation by VinoWire.

3 thoughts on “Ezio Rivella: Rosso di Montalcino needs its “own personality”

  1. Pingback: Does Rosso di Montalcino need more personality? « Do Bianchi

  2. It just occurred to me that producers need to find a home for all the non-Sangiovese planted in the Montalcino zone that they were previously labeling “Brunello”.

    If it says “Montalcino” on the label, it should be mono-varietal Sangiovese. If a producer needs a home for the Cab they were calling “Brunello”, the Sant’ Antimo DOC is readily available.

    Blending French varieties into Rosso di Montalcino will only result in a loss of identifiable personality. All producers know the route to Rosso di Montalcino with more personality that represents the region. It is not outward; it is inward: meticulous viticulture, low yields and careful vinification and ageing of local Sangiovese.

    It is shocking how some producers have so little respect for tradition in areas like Montalcino, a region of arguably one of Italy’s top reds. Can you imagine Bordeaux or Burgundy producers allowing non-traditional varieties in even their lowest generic appellations for the purpose of gaining some sort of personality? Unthinkable.

    Label the “Brunello” Cab Sant ‘Antimo and earn what the market will bear. Don’t exploit “Montalcino” to recoup an investment on past illicit Brunello plantations. You made your bed now lay in it…

  3. Pingback: Brunello Dunello:Words to Ponder in Times of Folly

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