Don't write off Lambrusco as sweet, simple wine made on an industrial scale, urges Margaret Rand. Today's best examples are remarkable and well worth seeking out. Here she does just that, on a visit to its home, Emilia-Romagna...
Six must-buy Lambruscos
Rinaldini, Vecchio Moro, Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro NV
Lovely fresh grassy nose and dry, aromatic palate; terrifically appetising. The blend includes 10% Ancellota and 5% Marzemino.
Price: £11.50 The Wine Society
Vittorio Graziano, Fontana dei Boschi, Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro 2009
Wild spices and herbs, with tannic grip and complexity. A compelling wine made by Metodo Ancestrale. Graziano’s wines age beautifully: a rarity in Lambrusco.
Price: £15-£16 40 Maltby St, Cheshire Smokehouse, Oxford Wine Co, Winetraders
Medici Ermete, Concerto, Lambrusco Reggiano 2013
Dry, lean and fresh, with grassy blackberry fruit, very moreish.
Price: £15 Dalla Terra, Hedonism, Harrods, Le Langhe, Penistone Court, Valvona & Crolla
Cantina della Volta, Rimosso, Lambrusco di Sorbara 2012
Bright, fresh and herbal; ripe cherries lifted by piercing acidity. Made by Metodo Ancestrale.
Price: £12.75 Amazon UK
Paltrinieri Radice, Lambrusco di Sorbara 2012
Savoury and complex, with floral and herbal notes. Made in the Metodo Ancestrale method.
Price: £18.95 Buon Vino
Cleto Chiarli, Pruno nero, Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro
More bubblegum in flavour – attractive if you want a slightly sweeter version. Made using the Charmat method.
Price: £12.95 Bottle Apostle, Carruthers & Kent, Champion Wines, Great Western Wine, Loki, Wine & Roses