The Vino Vino Situation goes to Romagna, where Giovanna Madonia, an all-women winery, makes an excellent Sangiovese

“Romagna mia, Romagna in fiore. Tu sei la stella, tu sei l’amore” (Romagna of my heart, Romagna in bloom. You are the star, you are my love).

Today I am presenting a Sangiovese from Romagna, and there is no better introduction than this popular tune. Together with Emilia, Romagna forms the Emilia-Romagna region, in Northern Italy. I must confess, I’m from Bologna, which is in Emilia, but I have some romagnolo blood, too.

They say that you realize you left Emilia and entered Romagna when, asking for a glass at a local osteria, you are not given water, but wine! Sangiovese wine, precisely.

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You probably associate Sangiovese with Tuscany. Well, it’s true. The world-famous Chianti wines are made with mostly Sangiovese grapes. However, this grape variety can give good results in other regions. Plus, the clones grown in Romagna are different from the Tuscan ones. The reason is that every terrain needs a specific variety to adapt to the environment.


Sangiovese grapes (Photo by francesco sgroi)

The Giovanna Madonia winery is located in Bertinoro, part of the Sangiovese DOC production area (more on Italian wine appellations here). It’s a wonderful example of women-owned business. Unique, high-quality wines originate from their meticulous care of the vineyards. Maybe because they are all women? Just saying…

I picked their Sangiovese Tenentino because it’s not refined in wood. This way, you can taste the Romagna-style Sangiovese in its purest form. You should be able to distinguish the characteristics of the terrain and the grape variety, without any other contaminations.

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The color is bright ruby red. At the nose, it smells like violets and cherries with an aromatic note. The rustic, tannic feature of Sangiovese is slightly softened by the 10% Merlot component, which–luckily!–does not alter the personality of Sangiovese.

My recommendation? First savor Sangiovese Tenentino on its own. Taste it side by side with your favorite Chianti Classico, so you can appreciate the differences. Then, pair it with a heaping plate of tagliatelle with ragù, for a true taste of Romagna!

Enjoy your wine!


Wine-maker: Giovanna Madonia
Name of wine: Forlì IGT Sangiovese Tenentino
Region: Emilia-Romagna
Type: Still red
Grapes: Sangiovese 90%, Merlot 10%
Price: About $12 


Working in wineries across Italy, I get to see how much passion goes into each bottle. With the Vino Vino Situation, every week I present recommend great Italian wines. These reviews are unsponsored and unsolicited. Salute!


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