Whatever one thinks of Italian wines, one attraction of Italy for the oenophile is the incredible variety of half-forgotten local grapes. We have recently discovered a new one, courtesy of Cristina Menestrina of Osteria Fior di Roccia. It’s called Negrara:
Produced in Trentino, deep dark red in colour, perfumed, vivacious with nice acidity and some tannic grip but overall quite soft and round on the palate, this grape is ‘piede franco’, i.e. not grafted on American root stock like the vast majority of European grapes to protect them from phylloxera.
Certainly not your standardised international wine, this specimen was produced by reputable producer Pravis and came at 16 Euros at the Osteria, which we found very resonable indeed for the quality and the sheer interest.
It accompanied, among other things, some simple and rustic but spectacularly good ‘chestnut gnocchi with pine nuts and raisins’ made by Chef Michele Menestrina:
Incidentally, the Menestrina siblings continue to make impressive progress and to produce great (and great value) eating experiences: if you are near Trento just go and try for yourselves. There will definitely be more about the Osteria on this blog next year when we visit Trento again.