Each month, Eataly Chicago celebrates a region in Italy by highlighting the area’s food and wine.  March 2014 is dedicated to  Sagrantino di Montefalco, the red wines of Montefalco, Umbria. During the month of March Eatlay Chicago will host “trade and consumer seminars, wine-by-the-glass programs, and wine tastings at their Enoteca and Aperitivo Bar, Vino Libero.”

According to the Montefalco Consortium, Sagrantino “almost completely disappeared from Umbrian vineyards in the 1960s, and was revived thanks to the dedication of few pioneer wine producers.” The Montefalco Consortium has made great strides in their campaign to raise awareness of Sagrantino. However, unlike other DOCG wines Sagrantino has not yet reached the popularity of other prestigious Italian wine regions.   At this point, the wines are enjoyed by those in the know; and if you don’t know, you are missing out!

According to Tom Hyland Italian wine consultant and author of Beyond Barolo and Brunello: Italy’s Most Distinct Wines, Sagrantino wines have been “a challenge because they are not made in a style that the average consumer finds approachable.” The wines are gigantic, tannic, and corporeal. I tasted the five wines being featured at Eataly Chicago wine event this month (listed below); although each winemaker has crafted their Sagrantino in a distinctive style from graceful to lean there is consistent red fruit flavors, clean acidity and lingering finish in all of the wines.  I encourage you to participate Eataly Chicago wine event to experience these amazing wines.

Featured Wines: Scacciadiavol’s  Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG 2008, Perticaia’s Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG 2007, Antonelli’s Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG 2007, Tenuta Castelbuono’s Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG 2007 and Arnaldo Caprai, Collepiano Montefalco Sagrantino DOCG 2007.