Enrico Riccardo Morando’s family estate in Castagnole Monferrato, Montalbera, is famous for its production of the relatively unknown but indigenous variety, Ruché di Castagnole Monferrato, known as the 'Red Prince of Monferrato'.
Found in seven neighbouring villages within the Asti province in Piemonte, Ruché refers to both the DOCG, which was granted in 2010, and the variety. The origin of this grape is unknown but it is thought that it was introduced by the Haut Savoie. Its extraordinarily attractive red fruit bouquet with floral hints and elegance secured its place on the Astrum list at the first sip. We are delighted to have these incredible and unique wines from Montalbera, and also to stock our first ever Ruché.
The winery is found at the highest point of the DOCG at 270m above sea level and is completely surrounded by the estates vineyards, meaning the vineyards have a range of different exposures and soil types. The vineyards cover six entire hills, which dip down into a valley cultivated with the traditional Piedmontese hazelnut. The vines vary in age from 7 to 30 years, and are trained in low Guyot trellises. All agricultural work is done by hand. A good 82 hectares are planted with Ruchè, which comprises 60% of the entire production of this appellation. Other planted varieties are Barbera d’Asti, Grignolino, and Viognier.
Montalbera’s philosophy is to let the fruit speak for itself and to share Morando’s passion for the delights of Ruché with the every drinker.