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The Istituto Grandi Marchi hosted a wine tasting event in London on 25 June 2024. Established in 2004, this institute comprises eighteen premier Italian wineries with a mission to promote the culture and trade of high-quality Italian wines. As part of their global tour, they showcased an outstanding selection of wines at London’s Plaisterers’ Hall.

These wineries are family-owned and have been in operation for at least 25 years, with some boasting centuries-old histories. They own estate vineyards, renowned for their rich heritage and enduring traditions. Their commitment is reflected in their focus on education, innovation, and the development of new markets.

There were some outstanding, sometimes pricey, top wines featured here. Several Vermentinos stood out, with their striking minerality, salinity and substantial mouthfeel, making them especially suitable for pairing with food. We spotted a few Chardonnays; aromatic and oaky and reminiscent of the best Australian Chardonnays from the past, which is not something we would typically associate with Italy.

Comprising of two estates: the Torgiano and the Montefalco, Lungarotti winery, founded by Giorgio Lungarotti, a pioneer of modern Italian winemaking, is a brand symbolising Umbria and known for their eco-friendly cultivation. We found all of the showcased wines to be excellent.

Rubesco – Red Torgiano DOC 2020

It has well balanced body and typically spicy aromas with strong hints of pepper and sweet tobacco and an undertone of red and violet jam. Pleasant on the palate, it has good concentration, ripe and harmonious tannins with a long fruity aftertaste.

Grapes: Sangiovese and Colorino grown with spurred cordon and harvested between September and October

Winemaking: Fermented in steel with maceration on the skins for 15 days; aged 1 year in barrel and 1 in bottle after light filtration.

Aurente – Chardonnay of Torgiano DOC 2020

White wine with great structure. Intense straw yellow colour, rich and elegant aromas of white fruit, banana, peach, pineapple and sweet woody hints of vanilla and butter with delicate hints of coconut and white chocolate; refined on entry, it opens with a beautiful fresh and savoury fruit and beautiful citrus acidity; long finish and excellent persistence.

Grapes: Chardonnay from hillside vineyards trained with double Guyot and double spurred cordon, harvested in crates in August – September

Winemaking: After cryomaceration in steel, it is fermented entirely in barrique, where it remains for another 6 months on the lees, with periodic batonnage to scale. It is then aged for 8 months in the bottle. If well preserved, it has a long life.

Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG – 2020

Red with great polyphenolic richness. Deep and intense, with a complex aroma of red fruits, morello cherry, currant and raspberry, and delicate notes of sweet tobacco and cocoa, and still medicinal herbs in the finish. The structure is dense, with rich but harmonious tannins, of great thickness; the fruit is supported by a fresh acidity, and the persistent aftertaste is of jam.

Grapes: 100% Sagrantino obtained from massal selection and harvested in mid-October.

Winemaking: Fermentation in steel with maceration on the skins for 28 days. Maturation in barrique for 12 months. Light filtration and 18-20 months in bottle before being released on the market.

Rubesco Vigna Monticchio Riserva 2004

Elegant and solidly structured, it has a deep ruby ​​colour and a complex aroma reminiscent of morello and blackberry, delicate hints of violet and light menthol notes and a spicy finish. Highly concentrated, fruity and slightly balsamic, it has soft and velvety tannins, a long and persistent finish.

Grapes: Sangiovese from the Monticchio vineyard, grown with double spurred cordon and harvested in October

Winemaking: Fermented in steel with maceration on the skins for 15-20 days, matured for a year in barrique and refined for several years in the bottle. Due to its complexity, it is suitable for an average aging of 30-35 years