La Spinatta : Our Suppliers : Gourmet Wales

La Spinatta

La Spinetta's story begins in 1977. That year Giuseppe Rivetti (nicknamed “Pin”) married Lidia, moved to Castagnole della Lanze and began to make wine. It is the home of Moscato d’Asti which the Rivetti’s believe has the potential for greatness. Moscato Bricco Quaglia, the world’s first single vineyard Moscato, is now acknowledged as one of the best sweet frizzante wines on the planet: light bodied with sweet apple, lively acidity and a refreshingly clean, fruity finish: a wonderful apéritif or dessert wine. In 1985 he produced his first red wine, Barbera Cà Di Pian followed in 1989 by Pin: a blend of Nebbiolo and Barbera. 1995 saw the birth of their now famous Barbaresco’s and 1998 the beginnings of the Barbera d’Asti Superiore. In 2000 the Rivetti estate purchased vineyards and set up a winery in Grinzane Cavour, Barolo to produce the highly acclaimed Barolo Campè.
It’s not difficult to think of exciting things to say about La Spinetta and Giorgio Rivetti. He is a superstar of the Italian wine scene, a legend of Piedmont, famous for his Barbaresco and Moscato; some people even describe him as a rock-star. He has gathered a cult following through the stellar wines he makes, through his conquests of new wines styles and types (Moscato first, then Barbera, then Barbaresco, then Sangiovese in Tuscany, then back to Piedmont for Barolo, a Graves style Sauvignon Blanc and so on).
In last year’s Gambero Rosso he was finally awarded his third star (only one other wine producer in all of Italy has three stars and that is Angelo Gaja) representing a total of more than 30 Tre Bicchieri awards over the years. This guide describes his reputation as “extraordinary”, and so it is.
The foundations of his success and of the supreme quality of his wines lie in his relentless energy, financial investment in anything that will help improve quality or secure great vineyards, and sheer hard work. Attention to detail manifests itself everywhere, especially in the vineyards: no pesticides or fertilisers are used and yields are very low (17-20 hl/ha). The vines for the prestige cuvées are all old vines (35-65 years old) with the younger vines’ production restricted to the “young” wines: Ca’ di Pian, Langhe Nebbiolo and Il Nero di Casanova. Extensive green harvesting is carried out in July/ August. Indigenous varietals are preferred to concentrate on the typicity of the region.
All of this goes towards a style of wine that is complex yet rich, where generous fruit is married with varietal correctness and elegant balance. These are truly great wines.

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