Wednesday, June 13, 2018

A Wine Lunch at Ristorante Pαlαzzo Ducαle dellα Montαgnolα with Camillo Montori


The second stop on the  Abruzzo wine tour was for a tasting of the wines of Azienda Agricola Camillo Montori over lunch at Ristorante Pαlαzzo Ducαle dellα Montαgnolα. Our host was owner Camillo Montori who toured us around his 15th century castle which has, over time, been a wine estate, a convent and is now a restaurant and event center. 

Among the estate's artifacts are the original well, a16th century winemaking room and a stone olive oil press. Camillo Montori has great passion for the Abruzzo region, he loves its architecture, its art and its history, he feels all of these things have contributed to its wine and food culture. 


After the tour, we went into the restaurant for the wine tasting served with some classic Abruzzo pairings. Our lunch started with prosciutto and cheese served with the Fonte Cupa Trebbiano d’Abruzzo 2017, an easy drinking white wine with red apple notes made from the region's most important indigenous white grape. 

The Fonte Cupa Colli Aprutini Pecorino 2017 was also served with the first course, it was crisp and fruity with a citrus and mineral-laced finish. Pecorino is both the name of the grape as well as the name of the local cheese. Legend has it that the grape was a favored delicacy of the local sheep population, hence the name. While both were refreshing, I took a second pour of the more lively Pecorino.



Our second course was Le Virtù, a minestrone-like soup, which is the May Day specialty in Abruzzo. This traditional soup has 49 different ingredients and takes seven pots to make it. The Fonte Cupa Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo 2017 was the first wine poured to go with the soup. This Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo is  a darkly hued rosé made from 100% Montepulciano grapes, it was fresh and vibrant with red cherry aromas and flavors and a hint of earthy undergrowth in the lingering finish. 

We were also poured the Camilo Montori Montepulciano d'Abruzzo 2016 with the soup, it was a deep, full bodied red with mixed red berry aromas and flavors and a slightly astringent finish. Both were delicious wines though I did prefer the Cerasuolo with the soup.

For our final savory course to pair with two more of the red wines, we were served bacon wrapped pork medallions with potatoes. Our wine pairings with this were the Fonte Cupa Montepulciano d'Abruzzo 2013 and the Fonte Cupa Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Colline Teramane Riserva 2011. Both of these reds were rich and concentrated with velvety tannins and a persistent finish. The Riserva was more multifaceted in its aroma and flavor profile, both were delicious with the pork.


We wrapped up our meal with a little something sweet to go with our coffee. The Abruzzo wine tour needed to get back on the road. Camillo Montori was a wonderful host who makes delicious easy drinking, food friendly wines, all of the above are recommended. 

If you are looking for a restaurant or event space in Abruzzo, be sure to check out Ristorante Pαlαzzo Ducαle dellα Montαgnolα.