Italian Indigenous Varieties: Mazzese Nero from Tuscany

This week’s indigenous variety hails from Tuscany, particularly the area around Grosseto and Pisa and is called Mazzese Nero. It is a red grape that is used in blends that make up the DOCs Montescudaio, Chianti Colline Pisane and Colli dell’Etruria Centrale. It is not generally seen as a mono-varietal wine or in “purezza” which is what the Italians say when one grape variety is made into a wine. I had never heard of this variety until writing this post. Apparently it brings fruit aromas of cherries to the blend and doesn’t bring a lot of color. It is a fertile variety and produces consistently. I found that it is used by Agricola San Felice, a forward thinking winery, in their Chianti Classico Gran Selezione alongside other ancient Tuscany varieties such as Abrusco, Pugnitello, Malvasia Nera and Ciliegiolo.

I love learning about new varieties in general and about new Tuscan ones in particular. My first years in Italy where all in Tuscany and I feel a particular affinity to that blessed part of the country and all that it has to offer. For example, the lovely picture above of an altar by Andrea Pisano. I love Italy not just for it’s amazing food & wines but for its art, language, literature, landscapes, mountains, seas, rivers, history and people. Art is what brought me there in the first place and from now on will be a part of this blog.

One comment

  1. Just amazing how many native grape varieties there are in Italy. This is the first I’m hearing of this grape too. Thanks for sharing Susannah!

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