The Monferrato wine area is part of the region of Piedmont in the north-western corner of Italy. The greater area also comprises roughly - which has varied over time, the modern provinces of Alessandria and Asti, with its history dating back to the ancient Celts.
The territory is cut in two by the river Tanaro. The northern part the ‘Basso Monferrato’, which lies between the river Tanaro and the Po, is an area of rolling hills and plains. The southern part the ‘Alto Monferrato’ rises from the banks of the Tanaro into the mountains of the Apennines and the water divide between Piedmont and Liguria. Monferrato is one of the most important wine districts of Italy and is one of the most famous Italian wine regions in the world, especially regarding red wines and sparkling wines.
The regions varied but ideal climate makes for wine that is not only an ingredient of economic wealth for the entire region but also a symbol of the culture and tradition in Monferrato.
The continental climate, with hot summers and cold winters combined with well-drained, tufo (volcanic) soils contribute to excellent growing conditions and grape balance. Monferrato received DOC status in 1994 with controls that may seem relax compared to other areas. Indigenous varietals are allowed to be blended with international grapes, with the condition that single varietal releases must be at least 85% of the main grape on the label.
Due to the widespread propagation of indigenous grape varietals and a wide variety of wines, which include: (11 DOC’s and 7 DOCG’s), the most famous are, Asti Spumante, Moscato d’Asti, Cortese, Malvasia, Moscato, Barbera, Freisa, Brachetto and Grignolino.
Red wines can contain the native Piedmont grapes blended with Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet-Franc and even Pinot Noir. Cortese is the most popular white varietal in white wines, which can also contain Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. Barbera del Monferrato DOC is also produced within the region, as is its DOCG Barbera del Monferrato Superiore, which requires six months of barrel age and a minimum 14 months of aging before release. The traditional cuisine of Monferrato in addition to the award-winning wines includes a wide variety of dishes ranging from meat, fish, vegetables, truffles, cheeses and typical dishes, which have achieved a well deserved reputation internationally.