|It was in 1977 that Giuseppe Rivetti started producing Moscato d’Asti in his winery at Castagnole Lanze. He named it La Spinetta “the top of the hill” and released two single-vineyard Moscatos the same year: Biancospino (hawthorn) and Bricco Quaglia (quail). However it was their reds that thrust them onto the international stage. The first wine was their Barbera Cà di Pian in 1985, followed by a host of reds including several Barbarescos and their Nebbiolo and Barbera blend “Pin”.
La Spinetta is a family run company that is constantly looking to grow. Headed up by the second generation of the Rivetti family, the brothers: Bruno, Carlo and Giorgio; they also have some of the third generation already working. As well as the original site at Castagnole Lanze, they have expanded and now also make a Barolo at Campè, Tuscan wines at Casanova and have just purchased Contratto (Italy’s oldest sparkling wine producer).
However, as much as the Rivettis are looking to the future, my focus is on their “original” wine. It is, in my opinion, the best Moscato d’Asti around. The grapes are harvested in September from single vineyards, but are released at different times of the year. The Biancospino is released in the November after harvest, and the Bricco Quaglia is released two months later in January.
Moscato d’Asti is a remarkable wine that needs to be drunk as young and fresh as possible, which explains why they stagger the release dates. The 20 hectare Biancospino vineyard has a southern exposure and sits on calcareous and sandy soils, the vines are on average 30-35 years. Once harvested the grapes are fermented in an autoclave (a stainless steel pressure controlled tank) for a month at 15 Celsius.