June 12, 2006

Bisol Prosecco

By Andrew Barrow In Vineyard Visits, Wine Notes
It is a dramatic landscape – an east-west running series of craggy hills, where grape growing is impossible thick forests smother the steep hillsides. Better appreciated from the air the vineyards are dotted with small farm buildings and Austrian influenced Italian villages.

Rolle Village, near Bisol, Veneto, Italy

Few tourists follow the Strade del Prosecco – the Prosecco wine route – which is a shame as the area makes such a contrast to the Venetian lagoon. The route was Italy’s first, established in 1966, that links vineyards and wineries, dramatic vistas and historical sites. We are talking of the DOC region here – not the low lying plain which hosts the poorer quality IGT vines.

My view form the Cartizze Hill (the ‘cru’ of Prosecco) was made all the more dramatic as a storm clattered across distant hills. It made for hazy photographs but a dramatic backdrop while sipping Bisols Cartizze Prosecco amongst their most prized vines.

Bisol is one of the top producers of the region. They produce a wide range of wines, single estate Proseccos, multi-vineyard blends, a still version and a sweet wine, in addition to the pear and almond fizz I was sipping while on top of the hill.

Bisol Prosecco Bottle Top

Bisol – five winemakers (three full-time, two contractors) producing an superb range of wines. All are light and fresh, smartly packaged, soft, light in alcohol – a glass before noon is essential I now find.

Bisol Jeio Prosecco Brut, 2005, Veneto
The ‘entry’ level Prosecco but one I think with the more stylish packaging. A blend of 85% Prosecco, 15% Verdizo and Pinot Blanc. A total of 16 different vineyards supply the grapes for this light and frothy fizz, each is vinified seperatly (an example of the attention to detail found across the whole range) before blending.

Scribblings Rating – 88/100

Bisol Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Crede, 2005, Veneto
Spumante Brut (Bibendum £9.27)
85% Prosecco, 5% Verdiso and 10% Pinot Bianc. Crede refers to the marine clay soils. The Verdiso adds acidity to the blend while body and weight comes from the Pinot Blanc addition. Plenty of light apple and pear flavours. Alcohol 11.5% a great, versitile, bottle. Lovely.

Scribblings Rating – 92/100

Bisol Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Cartizze, 2005, Veneto
Spumante Dry (Bibendum £14.56)
From the estates 50 hectares of Cartizze hill vineyards. My favourite of the bunch; just a touch more complexity, weight, flavour, and length. Superb.

Scribblings Rating – 96/100

Bisol Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Vigneti del Fol,Veneto
Spumante Extra Dry
100% Prosecco. The Fol region extends in an arc around the Cartizze hill down to Santo Stefano, where the Bisol winery is located. Another excellent rendition of Prosecco. Designed for the on-trade market specifically Chinese restaurants.

Scribblings Rating – 90/100

Bisol Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Garnei, Veneto
Spumante Dry
Selected grapes from all the Bisol vineyards. Garnei means ‘grape seeds’, and relates to the selection process in this case a blend of selected grapes from across the best vineyard plots including a portion from the Cartizze Hill.

Scribblings Rating – 90/100

Bisol Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Molera, Veneto
Still White
Comprises 88% Prosecco with the remainder being Verdiso. Alcohol 11.5%. Lemon-lime, high acidity, salty(?), crisp, dry, interesting. Light. More flavour than many an Italian white and worth trying as a subsitiute for Pinot Grigio and the like.

Scribblings Rating – 86/100

Bisol Passito di Prosecco ‘Duca di Dolle’ NV, Veneto
Sweet White
A blend of 14 vintages, each topping up the barrel after each harvest. Lovely treacle-tinged orange and baked apricot nose and flavours. Rich and creamy. Superb with a chocolate torte. 13.5% alcohol. Production of just 3,000 half bottles. The name Dolle was used by a local poet as an illiteration for Rolle (Row-lay). Superb.

Scribblings Rating – 96/100

Bisol Cartizze
1 Comment
  1. spittoon June 23, 2006

    Visiting Bisol and Prosecco.

    Rolle Duca di Dolle guesthouse .Plenty of correspondence regarding my Italian trip – sorry for the lack of specific location details.Prosecco is a small wine region directly north of Venice. Rolle, where I was based, is a small village cresting…


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