Grape Encyclopedia: Dolcetto
Dolcetto’s name means “little sweet one” in reference to the grape’s low acidity. While the exact origin of this grape is disputed, one theory suggests the grape originated in France and was brought to Monferrato sometime in the 11th century while competing theories suggest the grape originated in the Piedmontese village of Dogliani, it is clear that Dolcetto grapes produce wines that are easy-drinking and food-friendly.
Dolcetto grapes are found primarily in the Monferrato hills of northwestern Italy. Today, Piedmont accounts for roughly 98 percent of the total Dolcetto grapes produced in Italy. It is estimated that there are roughly 6,000 hectares (15,000 acres) of Dolcetto currently planted in Piedmont. While the variety has successfully made its way to Australia and the USA, Piedmont remains the heartland.
Dolcetto wines have their own DOC status within several major subregions of Piedmont including Alba, Acqui, and Asti.
Dolcetto grapes are intensely and brightly colored and are noted for their dark, black fruit flavors. The grape can also produce wines with soft spicy aromas with earthy undertones. Typically producing medium-to-full-bodied wines, Dolcetto grapes have soft tannins and medium acidity. Dolcetto tends to have a deep ruby to purple color and an ABV of 11.5-1.5%.
Dolcetto’s name, means “little sweet one” in reference to the grape’s low acidity. Dolcetto grapes are used to produce Dogliani, Dolcetto di Diano d’Alba, and Ovada (aka Dolcetto di Ovada Superiore) and Dolcetto di Ovada. The grape is permitted for use in multiple DOCs and IGPs around Italy.
Other names for the Dolcetto grape include Nera Dolce, Ormeasco, and Charbono.
By Empson USA Staff | Oct 2021
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