All this talk about which areas of Italy have DOCG and DOC denominations can make one’s head spin. One province however, has a very limited number of DOCs wines and no DOCG wines to speak of in fact. That province is my former hometown of Milan.
Not surprisingly, the area around this big city is not considered a perfect area for viticulture. However, just 40 kilometers away, there is an area that has been producing wines for hundreds of years, the Colle di San Colombano.
San Colombano d.o.c. wine is the only DOC wine produced in the province of Milan. It was designated a DOC in 1984.
I first discovered these wines when I lived in Milan and would go to the food festival around the town of Lodi called the Rassegna della Lodigiana.
I loved discovering new areas around Milan, new restaurants and traditional dishes and lo and behold wines.
Wines from San Colombano are generally made from Croatina, Barbera and Uva Rara for the reds in order to be part of the DOC. Some international varieties have been planted in recent years as well. For the whites, a number of grapes have been used in addition to the indigenous variety Verdea.
The soils in this area are quite minerally and have calcareous and sand mixed together. The wines they produce are easy drinking wines that complement the local food perfectly.
The grapes for production of San Colombano DOC wines must be cultivated exclusively in the Comune of Miradolo Terme and Monteleone in the province of Pavia, Graffignana and Sant’Angelo in the province of Lodi and San Colombano al Lambro in the province of Milano.
The wines were present at Vinitaly but I didn’t get a chance to taste through them, sadly. Some of the most well-known producers are Az. Agr. Guglielmini Giuseppe, Az. Agr. Nettare dei Santi di Gianenrico Riccardi,
and Az. Agr. Pietrasanta Vini e Spiriti.