Grignolino is a red Italian wine grape variety commonly grown in the Piedmont region. It makes light colored wines and rosés with very fruity aromas, strong acidity and tannins. The name Grignolino derives from the word grignole which means "many pips" in the local Piedmontese dialect of the Asti region. The abundance of pips, or seeds, contribute to the strong, bitter tannins associated with the wine. Modern winemaker try to avoid the excess tannins with gentle and slow pressings. Grignolino has two Denominazione di origine controllata (DOCs) that produce wine from it-Asti and Monferrato Casale
Grignolino The name probably derives from the dialect from Asti "Grignolo, a name given to the seeds, where the grapes of this variety are particularly rich. The origin of the variety of course dates back to the area of Monferrato, between Asti and Casale, but has since spread to other areas of Piedmont and Lombardy, where he is also known as Barbesino. It was mentioned since the end of '700 and the bitter talk about it in 1825. It is often blended with Barbera and Freisa to produce wines with more intense color and more balanced.
Grignolino is primarily planted in the Asti province of Piedmont and is rarely found outside this region. One notable exception is the California producer Heitz Cellars that grows a limited amount in their Napa Valley vineyard
Follows, by region, a list of all DOC and DOCG where use is permitted of this vine.
- Gabiano - 5 to 10%
- Grignolino d'Asti - 90 to 100%
- Grignolino del Monferrato - 90 to 100%
- Monferrato - 85 to 100% (in the "Claret" or "Ciaret)
- Piedmont - 85 to 100% (with mention of the vine)
- Ruby Cantavenna - 00 ÷ 25%
Viticulture and winemaking
Producers in the Asti region try to model Grignolino on the wines of Beaujolais and those made from the Dolcetto grape in the Cuneo. These light bodied, pale colored wines are made to be consumed young and while waiting for the brawnier, Nebbiolo and Barbera based wines of the region age. While the grapes are relatively low in alcohol at around 11-12% ABV, they do have a significant amount of tannins due to the abundance of pips, or seeds. Modern winemaking techniques try to minimize the amount of tannin extraction by utilizing slow and gentle pressings. Wines made from Grignolino can have noticeably strong acidity and fruity aroma with alpine notes.
Grignolino is highly prone to mutation, creating a significant amount of clonal variation. These different clones of Grignolino can impart different aromas and flavor characteristics ranging from green herbal, leafy notes and vegetable stock to raspberry and fruit. The grape is also highly reflective of its terroir and the different types of vineyard soils that it may be planted in. Grignolino is also prone to millerandage, with clusters (or even grapes within a single cluster) at different stages of ripening. The severity of the millderandage varies from year to year and can dramatically affect the quality and yield totals of any given vintage.
Grignolino is particular with respect to microclimate, and requires dry, sandy soil and a sunny exposition to ripen successfully, which it does unevenly and with difficulty. The leaves are medium-large with three or five lobes, and the bunches form a compact, elongated, winged pyramid supporting small, ellipsiodal berries berries with fragile, dusty skins. Depending on the soil, which strongly imprints the fruit, and density of planting, the grapes range in color from black-violet to pink-violet, and are high in both acidity and tannin. Grignolino is often blended with Barbera and/or Freisa to boost color and structure.
The wine produced from the Grignolino vine is light, fresh, fruity and not very deep in color, refreshing but unsubstantial and decidedly to be drunk soon after the vintage. It offers bright red fruit with notes of herbs and flowers, with a hint of bitterness on the finis
Environmental and cultural characteristics and needs :
Its leaf is medium or medium-large, pentagonal, or five lobes and trefoil; cluster medium or medium to large, elongated pyramid, with the possibility of one or two wings, compact, small-medium berry, ellipsoidal with pruinose, thin, ranging in color from black-violet to violet-red (depends very much on the environment in which it is grown and the density per plant. He needs good exposure, dry and sandy soils. The pigs are raised in the counter mixed with pruning.
Diseases and adversity :
It does not have great defense capability and tolerance to major diseases, particularly in the botrytis, bunch rot and mildew acid. Resistant to mildew better. It can easily submit phenomena of desiccation of the spine, is sensitive to iron chlorosis, especially in poor years.
Grignolino has a wide variety of synonyms that is known under. These include Arlandino, Balestra, Barbesino, Barbesinone, Barbezina, Barbisone d'Espagne, Barbosina de Bologne, Girodino, Girrodino, Grugnolino, Grugnolino Pisano, Nebbiolo Rosato, Neretto di Marengo, Pollasecco, Rosetta, Rossello, Rossetto, Lipstick, gyrodyne and Verbesino.