May 25, 2015

Italy's Champagne: Franciacorta

If I asked you to name three great sparking wines your first answer would probably be Champagne, which is produced in France. More serious wine aficionados might also mention Cava, which comes from Spain. Italy too has a rising star from the Lombardy region and it's called Franciacorta.

Franciacorta, Italy's Champagne

No trip to Italy is complete without a winery tour. While travelling from Lake Maggiore to Venice we made a stop at the Fratelli Berlucchi Winery near Lake Iseo. This family winery produces both still and sparkling wines, including Franciacorta.

Lake Iseo Vineyard

The Fratelli Berlucchi wine cellar is housed in a 15th century palazzo. Modern wine vats share space with wall frescoes that are centuries old.

Wine Vats

Frescoes at Fratelli Berlucchi

Bottles used to be turned by hand, one by one. Today the job is done much more efficiently by placing the bottles in a large crate which is then rotated mechanically.

After touring the wine cellar we sampled some of the wines. It was only 10 o'clock in the morning so the platters of meats and cheese were a welcome addition to the table. And I discovered a delicious local cheese: a mild, soft-ripened variety called robiola.

Wine Tasting

For those who are interested, Wine Enthusiast has a good article that explains all about the classic method of sparkling wine production and Franciacorta's place in the global marketplace.

Next:  Opera and Shakespeare in Verona


  1. I would name Prosecco, which is my first choice.

  2. I would love to try Franciacorta. :)

    Those pictures are really cool!

    Visiting from the A to Z Road Trip.

    Write with Fey


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