What an amazing month learning and tasting my way through wines of Marche and Umbria Italy with Tina Morey of Protocol Wines and a Twitter community of wine lovers on Tuesdays at 9:00pm EST using the hashtag #winestudio.
Wines from Castello di Magione (DOC Colli del Trasimeno), Umbria completed our month long journey of wines from this undiscovered central region of Italy. Clay Fritz, owner and winemaker of Fritz Winery in Dry Creek Valley Sonoma County, CA and Giulia Luccioli, Senior Managing Director at Sagrivit led us through the tasting of the wines and cultural background on Castello di Magione.
What I learned about the wines of Castello di Magione, Umbria
Castello di Magione was once a medieval castle dating back to 1150 A.D.
The castle is now owned by the Sovereign Military Order of Malta of which Clay Fritz is a member
Proceeds from the wines made at Castello di Magione help fund global relief efforts to areas affected by natural disasters
Castello di Magione vineyards are part of the DOC district of Colli del Trasimeno in Umbria
The DOC Colli del Trasimeno is located in the northwestern region of Umbria and borders Tuscany
Magione is a small town about 10 kilometers to the east of Lake Trasimeno in Umbria. The lake creates a moderate climate that tempers the Umbrian summer heat resulting in a microclimate well suited for growing grapes
Castello di Magione has 30 hectares planted to vines along slopes facing Lake Trasimeno
Grechetto is a white grape varietal grown at Castello di Magione and is used to produce their Monterone Grechetto, a single vineyard wine
Red varietals grown at Castello di Magione include Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese, and Gamay
My tasting notes~
2013 Castello di Magione Monterone Grechetto, Colli del Trasimeno DOC , 100% Grechetto – 13.5% abv – retail $20.00
Golden straw color, nice full body with a soft mouth feel. Hints of lemon, herbs, minerals and a nice balance of acidity. Nice aperitif wine. Would pair well with seafood, chicken dishes and as noted in our Twitter conversation typically paired with truffles.
2014 Castello di Magione Sangiovese, Umbria IGT 100% Sangiovese – 13% abv – retail $20.00
A light wine for everyday. Notes of cherry, herbs and noticeable tannins and good acidity. Would pair well with roasted chicken to the classic pizza or pasta dishes.
2008 Castello di Magione Morcinaia, Colli del Trasimeno DOC 40% Merlot 40% Cabernet Sauvignon 20% Sangiovese – 14% abv – retail $35.00
Beautiful dark ruby color. Notes of dark ripe fruit, herbs, and an earthiness with a nice backbone of structured tannins and acidity. I would pair with grilled red meat with herbs and mushrooms.
I was on the road while I tasted these wines, but pulled together an Italian inspired dish of gnocchi with seasonal sautéed vegetables from the local farmers market in Wisconsin. I added some sage to compliment the earthy herb notes in the wine. The gnocchi paired especially nicely with the Grechetto and Sangiovese.
Gnocchi and Seasonal Vegetables
- 1 package prepared gnocchi
- 3 ears of sweet corn cut kernels from cob
- 2 medium zucchini diced
- 1 small sweet onion diced
- 2 garlic cloves sliced
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4 lb. applewood smoked bacon diced
- 12 sage leaves
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan
- Melt butter in a large sauté pan. Add sage leaves cooking both sides until just golden. Remove from pan.
- Bring large stock pot of water to a boil and cook gnocchi according to package directions.
- Using a slotted spoon drain gnocchi from water and add to remaining sage butter. Sauté gnocchi until slightly crisp on the outside. Remove from heat.
- In another large sauté pan, sauté bacon until crisp. Remove to drain on paper towels.
- Add corn kernels, zucchini, onion and garlic to the bacon drippings in the sauté pan. Cook vegetables over medium to medium high heat until vegetables are just tender, about 15 minutes, adjust heat if needed. Add bacon to vegetables and stir to combine.
- To serve, spoon gnocchi in the middle of a platter and top with the vegetables. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and crumbled sage leaves.
Disclosure: The importer/distributor/winery provided the wines for my evaluation. All the opinions expressed are my own.