In 2011 Paolo Cominoli joined his nonna Vittoria Binotti at their tiny 5ha family estate, whose roots lie deep in the soft, acidic, Monte Rosa morainic, clay & alluvial soils of the small, historic 14ha Sizzano DOC in the Alto Piemonte region. Sizzano was the second region to be awarded DOC in 1969 after Gattinara.
The Comero vineyards comprise Vespolina (a relation of Nebbiolo), Nebbiolo (3ha in total, of which just 1ha is allowed for Sizzano) & Erbaluce (1ha only). They lie at c. 200metres ASL, along the banks of the river Sesia valley & above the village of Sizzano; they were planted largely in 2000. In 2009 they renovated the old farm buildings to create a new cantina were the vinification, affinamento, stocking happens. Paolo’s first vintage was 2011, at which point he made just Sizzano. In 2013 they also started working with three plots of Erbaluce, one of which was planted – maggiorina trellised – in the 1960s.
The Sizzano DOC stipulates a min. 50% Nebbiolo (Spanna) & maximum of 50% of Vespolina &/or Uva Rara (Bonarda Novarese); plus 10% of red, non-aromatic, Piemontese fruit may be sourced. Ageing of SizzanoDOC is min 22mths, of which 16mths should be in wood.
Paolo’s Sizzano DOC wine is made up of 65/70% Nebbiolo & 30/35% Vespolina (no Uva Rara), vinified for between 15 – 20 days on the skins, followed by up to 24 mths in 10HL botti grandi. Total acidity tends to be at 6grams/litro; pH at 3.50; alcohol 13.5%; production c.1300 bts (vintage 2015).
When not tending his vines, Paolo works at the Berlucchi estate of Franciacorta, in both the vineyards & cantina.
Colline Novaresi Bianco (Erbaluce)
Vespolina Colline Novaresi
Nebbiolo Colline Novaresi