What does it mean Terroir?
Monferrato happens to be one of the most diverse fine wine regions in all of Italy. Which, considering Italy’s incredibly diverse wine scene, has to put it in the running for one of the most diverse fine wine regions on the entire planet.
To best appreciate that, you need to have some glasses in front of you. Sorry, we can’t help you with that part; there are limits to the powers of the Internet.
We can, however, give you what might be the next best thing: a high-definition glimpse into what makes the area so diverse and special… what makes this area a Terroir. To do that, we have to dig down into the landscape of Monferrato. And, in turn, to dig down into that, we have to go… up. To understand the detail here, you need to see the bigger picture.
Are you confused yet? Pour a glass and don’t worry, you won’t be confused after watching this episode about the meaning of Terroir.
Monferrato is able to grow Barbera, Cortese, Grignolino, Dolcetto, Freisa, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, and a host of other wine grape varieties, and (more importantly) grow all of the well. The fact that it can support such a diverse range of grapes and wines is due in large part to the region’s topography, which has a big impact on the details that make or break the development of wine grapes in the vineyard.
The expansive, rolling hills that dominate the Monferrato landscape (best appreciated from high vantage points) aren’t just beautifully diverse to the eyes, folks. They also provide an almost dizzying volume of combinations of aspect and sun exposure (different grapes like different amounts of sunlight when they ripen); slope (different grape varieties like different levels of water, and the slope helps to control drainage); soil types (vine roots are particularly picky about those); and elevation (which helps to control temperature when the vines are developing their fruit).
Given that, it’s no surprise that Monferrato’s winemaking regulations permit so many grape varieties and blendings to be used compared with the rest of Italy, with the rest of italian Terroir. Not only can Monferrato handle it, it can handle it with style.