Valtellina is a beautiful Alpine valley crossed by the Adda river that forms Sondrio Province. It is among the most important wine-producing regions in Lombardia, yielding excellent red wines over the centuries. Here, the so-called heroic wine-production is born. Vineyards are dislocated on drop offs terraced by old generations of farmers. They dug mountains, by hand or with the only help of donkeys, and built up dry-stone walls that lasted until today. It is not possible to enter these small terraces with agricultural machines and grapes have to be picked up by hand and carried on the shoulders on narrow paths and steep slopes. The atmosphere surrounding the visitor is incredible. Among wonderful mountains, attracting skiers and mountaineers, living traditions can be found in products and dishes of the ancient poor cooking. The Bresaola della Valtellina DOP, the cheeses Bitto and Casera DOP , the pasta called Pizzoccheri and apples are some examples of the food and passion patrimony of these lands.
Valtellina Superiore with sub-divisions Inferno, Grumello, Sassella, Valgella, Maroggia is made up by 90% of Nebbiolo grapes, locally called Chiavennasca. Lombardia is the only Italian region, beyond Piemonte, where this worthy wine variety is cultivated. It is a ruby red wine leaning towards garnet with a peculiar scent, intense, delicate, agreeable and with a dry taste slightly tannic, velvety, harmonic and persistent.
Inferno has a more strong and stern character. It is more coarse than the others as a young wine, but it is living long. It is indicated for roasted meat, game and seasoned cheeses. Grumello is rich in fragrances and has a subtle aroma reminding almonds, to be served with tasty dishes as risotto, polenta taragna and braised meat. Sassella is weaker and sometime more fruity, but always well structured, it is good with red meats, cold cuts and local cheeses. Valgella is the softest and most delicate one, good with Bresaola, the Pizzoccheri and the cheese violino di capra. Finally, Maroggia produced in a limited quantity is historically linked to the character of Benigno de' Medici. It can be served with meats and local cheeses as well.