Ruché: a grape varietal found today in Piedmont, it is believed that this varietal has traveled from France but there is no written documentation of this variety. Ruché is a varietal typically found today in Castagnole Monferrato and has a very unique and special characteristic, an aromatic red grape varietal. Like most red varietals in Piedmont this varietal was always made into a sweet wine, and it wasn’t until the town priest, Don Giacomo Cauda who in 1964 was the first to make this varietal into a dry wine. Today there are a handful of producers working with this grape making it into a dry aromatic style, and here I have listed some of my favorites from the tasting of 12 producers.
Bosco 2015 Ruché- right off, I think the bottle was just opened because we arrived early. There were tropical fruits on the nose and pallet and at first it reminded me a lot of Gewurztraminer. After we had made the rounds went back to have a proper glass because we enjoyed it so much and at that point had opened up greatly. Did not have that sweetness at first taste but had good red fruit, floral, showed much more elegantly and a long finish. Could be a bottle my husband and I could enjoy easily.
Francesco Borgognone 2014 “Vigna del Parroco” – Francesco Borgognone has a close connection with priest Don Giacomo Cauda and today produce their Ruche’ from the same vineyard where the priest made his first dry Ruche’. The impression I got from Francesco was he had a great passion and understanding to this grape and was able to display it in its purity. This wine showed black fruits, violets, and peppery notes. This will be a producer I will visit in the next weeks.
Gatto 2015 Ruché – Gatto is an established family run winery since the 900’s in the area of Castagnole Merferrato, and amongst other wines are producing a wonderful example of Ruche’. The 2015 vintage is going to be a promising one for many different wines here in Piedmont. It is a BIG vintage very giving and really showing off the power of some of the grapes varietals. Here we have full mouth of darker fruit, floral wild rose, violets, and spice with some nice tannins.
I plan to visit some of these producers and will report how the tastings went, with photos of their gnarly old cellars!