#ItalianFWT,  Lombardy,  Veneto

Lake Garda, Lugana and Lagostini…

Lugana Loves Lake Garda

From Chiaretto and Amarone to Soave and Custoza, Lake Garda does not fall short in the area of winsome wine production. South of Lake Garda, in between the provinces of Brecia and Verona, and stretching out over both Lombardia and Venezia lies the inter-regional appellation known as Lugana. Lugana is a northern white wine that has been around for years, although it may have been under the radar of many.  However, more and more wine-lovers all over the world are taking notice.
Lake Garda
Map of Lugana
Photo Credit: Consorzio Tutela Lugana DOC

Wines of Lugana 

The wines of the Lugana DOC were recognized back in the 1967 for their distinctive quality and character.  Lugana is made from a minimum of 90% Turbiana (also known as Trebbiano di Lugana)  grapes, although many producers nowadays use 100%.  Lugana performs well due to the remarkable grape characteristics, the microclimate, gentle lake breezes coming from Lake Garda and its conducive soil.  The soil is calcareous clay over glacial moraine (see photo above).  Oak can be used, but oak usage is not unanimous. The resulting white wine is elegant, fresh and with distinctive character. However, depending on the production methods, the wines can be medium-full-bodied, savory and indicative of minerals. It is true love between Lugana and Lake Garda, as the wine feeds off the soil surrounding the lake and the lake itself, manifesting excellent acidity and complexity.
Turbiana Grapes used for Lugana

Lugana is produced in 5 different styles:

Lugana DOC is dry, young and forward with delicate aromas of floral and almond notes. The minimum alcohol content has to be at least 10.5%, but it is often over 12%.
Lugana DOC Superiore requires lower yields, more selective grapes and aging for a minimum of 1 year.  There must be a minimum alchohol level of 12%, although it is often over 13%. The Superiore is more complex and more aromatic with notes of wild herbs, apple, citrus and spice from oak aging.
Lugana DOC Riserva must aged for at least 24 months (6 mo. in the bottle) and minimum 12% ABV.  The riserva, as it has had more time to evolve, has an even more complex profile. Smoky, warm mineral notes, and a lingering finish.
Lugana Spumante is made via the Charmat or Martinotti method and the classic method. The resulting sparkling Lugana, contingent on the method used, is either creamy with good perlage or refined and complex with popping perlage. Fresh and full-bodied with 12% ABV.
Lugana Vendemmia Tardiva, which means “late harvest.” is is made with over-ripened Turbiana grapes that are then aged for 12 months. This wine is not as sweet as a typical passito, but it does have 13% ABV.

Lugana wines have great aging potential and longevity.  The Consorzio Tutela Lugana DOC was founded in 1990 to both protect and enhance Lugana wine production.  Good for us!

Tasting Lugana During The Wining Hour

Cantina La Pergola Biocòra Lugana DOC

La Pergola Biocòra Lugana is made on the province of Brescia, on the Veneto side from Cantina La Pergola.  Biocòra Lugana is a certified organic wine made from 100% Turbiana.  The color is an intense straw yellow and the bouquet is floral with citrus and herbaceous notes. The palate has ripe grapefruit and apple. 14% ABV. 

Perla del Garda Lugana DOP 2016

This Lugana comes from the Lombardy region and is produced by Cantina Perla del Garda in Lonato del Garda (Brescia). Lugana wines are at the heart of this winery, as they make the dry, sparkling and Vendemmia Tardiva.  Perla is a dry white, also made from 100% Turbiana. The soil has the same characteristics: morainic, calcareous clay and stoney. This wine is a delicate straw yellow, with aromas of white flowers, stone fruit and spices.  Perla Lugana is fresh and light with yellow apple and soft, flint mineral notes on the palate. 12.5% ABV
Both wines were paired with a delicious plate of grilled lagostini (mini lobsters, langostinos, langoustines). Fish and seafood pair well with Lugana.  This includes the regional fish, cod, which can be made many different ways.  

Join us this weekend for a twitter chat with the Italian Food, Wine, Travel group Sat Oct 6 from 8-9am Pacific Time using these hashtags #Lugana #LakeGarda #VinoLuganaDOC #ItalianFWT with posts by the following bloggers on these topics:

Planted, harvested and aged in NY. I have a background in education and marketing, with a love and passion for travel...and all things wine. In addition to writing about wine, I also maintain an online wine boutique (thewininghour.com) that caters to the winelover, as well as the weekly vinous winechat (#WiningHourChat) on Twitter (see page for more info).

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