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oltrepo' pavese tour

oltrepo’ pavese tour


Probably Prosecco (the popular bubbles obtained by Charmat method in the Veneto and Friuli regions, north-east of Italy).

Then probably Franciacorta (the classic method produced in Lombardia-north west of Italy) or also Trento DOC (Classic Method from Trentino region-still in the north) and so the well known brand Ferrari, famous company of the area. Not to mention Asti Spumante (Charmat method of Piedmont), the renowed sweet sparkling wine.

But there is another product to keep in mind: “Oltrepò Pavese” in Lombardy. An area with considerable potential but that does not seem to be fully aware of that. Take note!

pinot nero in oltrepo' pavese

pinot nero in oltrepo’ pavese

I wondered why, so I have been there to discover more about the production and the communication.



There are approximately 33.359 acres of vineyards which make this area one of the largest Italian ones. They also produce some still wines but we are going to focus on the production of spumante produced through classic method.

It is based on PINOT NERO grape and it seems they have everything:

  • The territory is mostly hilly (ideal for vines);
  • The climate is temperate with significant night and day temperature ranges (very important condition for a perfect ripening of the grapes);
  • The ground seems to remember the one in Champagne somehow, thanks to the presence of marl and sandstone (as well as limestone along with sand and clay).

Pinot NERO is a “difficult” grape which need specific conditions and it’s delicate. Yet the production of a sparkling wine made

history in oltrepò pavese

history in oltrepò pavese

(almost) only from Pinot nero means risking to lose balance and/or elegance, in other cases obtained thanks to a blend with Chardonnay.

In any case, Pinot NERO has found here a particular habitat giving a very interesting expression since long time ago.

What is missing then to seriously stand out? Is it just a communication problem? Let’s analyze the different aspects ..


If you have your own idea about it I’d like to know, please leave a comment…



For sure the complete name of this wine is very long and I guess it is difficult to be pronounced by strangers. Try after me: “I have just had a great … OLTREPO’ PAVESE PINOT NERO METODO CLASSICO”!!

But first of all, let’s read the label to understand the regulation which the name contains and protects the consumer (!):


– Oltrepò Pavese Metodo Classico;

– Oltrepò Pavese Metodo Classico rose

70% Pinot Nero

30% Chardonnay, Pinot GRIGIO, Pinot Blanc

– Oltrepò Pavese Metodo Classico Pinot NERO;

– Oltrepò Pavese Metodo Classico Pinot NERO Rosé.


85% Pinot Nero

15% Chardonnay, Pinot GRIGIO, Pinot Blanc


Cruasé ‘85% Pinot NERO

15% Chardonnay, Pinot GRIGIO, Pinot Blanc


quality standards, image and packaging offered by the Consortium


“Cruasè” is a good communication initiative by the way!

Nowadays it is the symbol of the territory: a classic method produced (mainly) from Pinot Nero. The name was created by combining terms CRU + ROSE’. A rosè naturally obtained (thanks to the red color of this grape to be well handled) and with a good value for money.

territory in oltrepo' pavese

territory in oltrepo’ pavese

So, a real synergy between the different realities is what they miss.


Have you ever tried the Cruasé, do not you think that it deserves more visibility?



I have been there recently, in September, it was sunny and cool, and I really enjoyed my tour also thanks to the collaboration of Riccagioia center and of the Consortium.

The area is very charming and I got to visit really interesting companies for the history or the products as well as the location and in rare cases the touristic offer.

But I had the feeling that each of them was autonomous, they did not seem part of the same system.

The politicians themselves do not seem to be fully aware of their potential so I find amazing they are going to close Riccagioia: experimental, educating and promotional center especially in this era where communication is that crucial.

I wonder if this is a cause or, in some way, a result of an obvious disconnection between the various entities that do not hide they are organized in different groups because they have different needs. For example, if you not find “Cruasé” on the label, it does not necessarily mean that the wine does not respect the rules but maybe that that company did not wish to join the initiative!

I cannot deny that in some cases there have been organizational deficiencies compensated, on the other hand, by a (often young) force who want to invest and bring out the brand Oltrepò.

Stay tuned to discover the wines I preferred there.