The name “Vino Nobile di Montepulciano” tells you two things about this acclaimed Italian red wine: that when it was first produced, centuries ago, it was meant to be served at the tables of the nobility; and that it hails from the ancient Tuscan hill town of Montepulciano.
Vino Nobile di Montepulciano was designated Italy’s first DOCG wine in 1980, in an attempt to protect its traditional status and ensure its high quality. Italian law requires that these wines be at least 70 percent Sangiovese grapes (known in Montepulciano as Prugnolo Gentile) and aged for a minimum of two years. The result is a rich, red wine with great depth of flavor and complexity, but still bright with notes of red fruit.
Rosso di Montepulciano is made with the same Sangiovese blend as Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, with less-stringent aging requirements. Lighter-bodied and ready to drink sooner than Vino Nobile, Rosso di Montepulciano still shares the classic flavor profile of the pricier wine.
Don’t confuse Vino Nobile di Montepulciano or Rosso di Montepulciano with Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, a red wine from the Abruzzo region that takes its name from the grape Montepulciano rather than the city of Montepulciano.
[Vee-no NO-bee-lay dee MAHN-tay-pool-chee-AH-no][ROHS-oh dee MAHN-tay-pool-chee-AH-no]