What’s in My Glass? Lagrein

I was pleasantly surprised a few weeks ago when a few lovely ladies brought me surprise wine fromAlto Adige–a crazy, half Italian/half German region of Northern Italy that puts out some seriously tasty wines.

Lagrein (Lah-GRINE) is one of those wines, and it’s particularly interesting because it’s only produced in Alto Adige. This indigenous grape is known for being dark and super tannic with a spicy character not unlike . Lately, it’s been getting a lot more (well-deservered) play in stores and restaurants as more people come to love its intensity of aroma and flavor-pairing potential.


I’d been waiting for the right moment to open up the Rubeno 2011 Lagrein I’d been gifted, waiting for weather patterns and the food in my fridge to align for an intense Italian experience. Happily, Tropical Storm Andrea dropped tons of rain and cold temps on NYC, creating the perfect warm, red wine scenario. This juice was practically black in the glass, with intense aromas of plum, blackberry, and spice. Despite intense aromas and color, the Rubeno was totally medium bodied and surprisingly soft on the palate with oak and berry flavors mingling happily toward a firm “Oh right, this is wine” tannic finish. TASTY.

I didn’t mind sipping this solo, but think gnocchi with mushrooms or dry rubbed pork could be awesome accompaniments.

In short if you haven’t experimented with Lagrein yet, you should.


Lagrein Uncorked:

Laura Loves: This NY Times article on Lagrein.

Tanning on NYC rooftops with bottles of wine.

Cocktails that include Cocchi Americano.

Fun Facts: There are 1082 acres of Lagrein worldwide–roughly equivalent to 800 football fields.

While most Lagrein is super dark, it’s also made into light, dry rosé wines.

Lagrein-flavored cheese exists! Check it out. 

Perfect Pairing:Braised red meat or game (Think: pork or wild boar ragout).


  • June 11, 2013
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