About this WINE
Castello di Luzzano, Lombardy
With Oltrepò Pavese to the west and Colli Piacentini to the east, Castello di Luzzano is situated on a hilltop at 270 metres above sea level. As such it is partly in Lombardy and partly in Emilia Romagna and this unusual position, straddling a regional boundary, has remained unaltered for centuries and affords the castello some undoubtedly spectacular scenery, as well as the opportunity to produce wine from two different wine regions.
The hamlet that forms the estate has, in addition to the castle, a church built in the neo-classical style, traditional eighteenth century workers cottages and an old custom house, which has been converted into a guest house and restaurant. With records citing wine production at Luzzano dating back as far as 1000 AD, it is clear that the estate has a rich and long history of making wine.
However the more recent history of Luzzano started at the beginning of the 20th century, when the Fugazza family took over ownership of the estate. With their arrival came the addition of the Romito estate (situated in Colli Piacentini) to the Luzzano stable. Currently, the whole the estate covers 120 hectares, of which 80 hectares are DOC vineyards.
Today it is run by Dott. Giovannella Fugazza, and her passion is the driving force behind Luzzano’s success. The extensive vineyards include plantings of Barbera, Bonarda, Pinot Nero, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Malvasia. Notably, they have replanted Barbera in some of their best vineyards in order to maximise the potential of this variety.
David Berry Green, Italian Wine Buyer
Pinot Noir is probably the most frustrating, and at times infuriating, wine grape in the world. However when it is successful, it can produce some of the most sublime wines known to man. This thin-skinned grape which grows in small, tight bunches performs well on well-drained, deepish limestone based subsoils as are found on Burgundy's Côte d'Or.
Pinot Noir is more susceptible than other varieties to over cropping - concentration and varietal character disappear rapidly if yields are excessive and yields as little as 25hl/ha are the norm for some climats of the Côte d`Or.
Because of the thinness of the skins, Pinot Noir wines are lighter in colour, body and tannins. However the best wines have grip, complexity and an intensity of fruit seldom found in wine from other grapes. Young Pinot Noir can smell almost sweet, redolent with freshly crushed raspberries, cherries and redcurrants. When mature, the best wines develop a sensuous, silky mouth feel with the fruit flavours deepening and gamey "sous-bois" nuances emerging.
The best examples are still found in Burgundy, although Pinot Noir`s key role in Champagne should not be forgotten. It is grown throughout the world with notable success in the Carneros and Russian River Valley districts of California, and the Martinborough and Central Otago regions of New Zealand.