June 2011

Tuscan Icon Ruffino Zooms into Prosecco

David Rocco, Host of La Dolce Vita on The Cooking Channel; Kelly Bensimon of Bravo’s Real Housewives of New York City, and Alicia Laury, Constellation Brands U.S.
Ruffino, long considered a powerhouse of Tuscan wine production with seven properties in the region, including estates in Chianti Classico, Montepulciano and Montalcino, is looking north to the Veneto for its next project, a D.O.C. Prosecco. This new endeavor is made from 100% Glera grapes sourced from select hillside plots in and around the Valdobbiadene region, one of Italy’s premier areas for Prosecco production, and is now in release nationally at $14.99 SRP.

While not Ruffino’s first northern Italian venture (they also own an eighth property, Borgo Conventi in Friuli’s Collio area), it is their first-ever sparkling wine, and another realization of the Ruffino philosophy of embracing tradition while looking to the future—that view to the future, in this case, admittedly fueled by the huge increases in production and market share of Prosecco over the last year due to its relatively low price point and growing acceptance by Millennials, one of Ruffino’s main target audiences.

The wine it is being custom-made by an existing property in the region. From what I tasted, Ruffino has obviously done its homework and partnered with a producer that knows what it’s doing in the cellar. The wine, labeled Extra Dry, is well-structured, with a very fine bead of bubbles and wonderful notes of apple, pear and peach.  A perfect summer sparkler that’s hitting the market at just the right time. 

—David Ransom

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