Discover Lively Lambrusco Wines at Bugno Martino in Mantua for Summer 2020

When the owners of Bugno Martino, Raffaella Merlin and her husband, Giuseppe Zavanella, were thinking of producing wine they knew they wanted to standout from the pack.

Bugno Martino prides itself in producing Lambrusco with care
Bugno Martino prides itself in producing Lambrusco with care

Bugno Martino – Backstory

Given that they are located in the municipality of San Benedetto Po – within the province of Mantova (Mantua in English) set in the region of Lombardi in northern Italy – their property was in the heart of Lambrusco Mantovano DOC country.

“We wanted to make a different type of Lambrusco, in an organic way.  It is difficult to find organic Lambrusco, and this was why we wanted to do something different”, says Raffaella. 

Bugno Martino steel tanks
Bugno Martino’s steel tanks

After traveling together, visiting wineries across Lombardi, the couple decided instead to take over a family farm and 12 years ago they planted their first vines.

To that end, Bugno Martino specializes in small production yields of Lambrusco Salamino, a varietal most commonly associated with Emilia Romagna, the region 10km south of their property.

This semi-sparkling wine can either be a red (Lambrusco Semi-Sparkling rosso) or rosé (Lambrusco Semi-Sparkling rosato), with a characteristic sparkling foam.

Before working in wine, Raffaella worked at an advertising agency.  It is her eye for design and craftsmanship and Bugno Martino’s emphasis on their lands’ terroir that distinguish their wines.

Bugno Martino wines
there is an a Bugno Martino wine for every occasion

Some exceptional wines from Bugno Martino.

  • Ciamballà; 100% Lambrusco Salamino that personifies the famous sparkling violet foam with aromas of red fruit and berries, full body and pleasant minerality (takes the nickname of their daughter, Greta).
  • Essentia; Lambrusco Mantovano DOC produced with an ancestral method featuring indigenous yeasts, and without the typical color additives and tannins found in more conventional wines.
  • MASO; a Rosé made with 100% Lambrusco Salamino that is named after son, Tommaso. It is a lovely pink color and features aromas of amaretto, violet, almond, with subtle acidity, sour cherry, and hibiscus on the palate.

Bugno Martino – Wine Tours

Guided tours of Bugno Martino’s vineyard and cellar are possible alongside Giuseppe and Raffaella.

It typically depends on the period visitors come. If it is spring or summer, we can visit the vineyard where you can see the grapes on the vine and learn of our techniques and methodologies. Afterwards we can have a wine tasting with regional foods. For example, we produce our own Parma Reggiano [cheese], Salame Mantovano, and mostarda. “

  • Mostarda di frutta – (or commonly just mostarda) is a delectable northern Italian condiment of fruits in a mustard-based reduction that is subtly sweet, spicy, and savory all at once.
Bugno Martino's small production Lambrusco Mantovano DOC vineyard
Bugno Martino’s small production Lambrusco Mantovano DOC vineyard in bloom

If you are interested in organic wines that are produced in limited quantities with a love of the land, then be sure to not to miss out on Bugno Martino’s selection.


Contact Details

Azienda Agricola Bugno Martino
strada Zottole 93 – 97 – San Benedetto Po (MN), Italy


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From Apulia with Love – Discover Alezio DOC wine for Summer 2020

Alezio DOC win

Alezio DOC wine has been a registered DOC since 1983.  It is a dry, warm, and pleasantly bitter wine that pairs well with pasta, braised meats like chicken.

If you have never heard of Alezio DOC wine, then it is most likely because its northern Italian varietals, Lambrusco DOC Mantovano (from Lombardi) and ASTI DOCG (from Piemonte), get more attention.  Rather Alezio DOC wine comes from one of the most rustic regions of Italy – Apulia.  Viewing Italy as a boot, then this area is located near tip of the heel.

Amphitheater in Lecce, Apulia, Italy
Ancient Roman Amphitheater in Lecce (in the region of Apulia, Italy)

The production area is within the province of Lecce in Apulia, and the municipalities of Alezio, Sannicola, Gallipoli, and Tugile in particular.

Alezio DOC wine types:

The Alezio DOC denomination is divided into red wines and rosés.

  • Alezio DOC Rosso
    • COLOR – ruby-red with orange tones with aging
    • NOSE – fruity and floral fragrances when young, with complex, balsamic notes with aging.
    • PALATE – dry and warm, with a pleasing bitter, tannic and sapid aftertaste.
  • Alezio DOC Rosé
    • COLOR – light pink
    • NOSE – red fruit (for example: strawberry), and hints of balsamic fragrances
    • PALATE –  dry, harmonious, velvety, with a slightly bitter aftertaste.
Alezio DOC win
Gallipoli beach – unwind in Apulia with Alezio DOC wine

When you are look to pickup a bottle of Alezio DOC, keep in mind that the word, Riserva, means that the wine has been aged at least 2 years in order to allow it to mature. As a result, you will experience a deliciously full-bodied wine.


Some of our favorite Alezio DOC wine producers


Cantina Coppola

The Coppola is an ancient vineyard, filled with a rich history.  It was founded in 1489 and has been handed down 15 generations.

The impressive cellars are housed in the beautiful botanical gardens of the estate.

The incredible Coppola vineyard hosts exceptional food and wine events, which are open to all guests and tourists when visiting their property. #cantinacoppola #AlezioDOC #Apulia Click To Tweet

Cantina Coppola
Via Tenuta di Torre Sabea – 73014 Gallipoli LE, Italy


Rosa del Golfo

Rosa del Golfo S.a.s. was founded over two centuries ago in Salento.  The vineyard is still run with family traditions.

Their grapes are cultivated within the areas of Malvasia, Negroamaro and Nera Leccese, which lend themselves to a more subtle, softer grape.  The vineyard welcomes all visitors to come and taste their unique bottles of Alezio DOC.

Rosa del Golfo
Via Garibaldi, 18 – Alezio LE, Italy


Alezio DOC win
Gallipoli sunset – the region produces Alezio DOC wine

Michele Calò e Figli

In the southern most Apulian region of Salento, Alezio DOC wine is an important cultural element. Here Michele Calò and his sons have been producing wine since 1954 in the municipalities of Tuglie, Alezio, Parabita and Sannicola.

Salento has long been a historic frontier between the east and west - an atmosphere that persists at Michele Calò to this very day. #AlezioDOC #Apulia #MicheleCalo Click To Tweet

In part due to its charm and geographic position, tradesmen from Constantinople established a strong outpost of Ottoman empire.

Salento has long been a historic frontier between the east and west.  In part due to its charm and geographic position, tradesmen from Constantinople established a strong outpost of Ottoman empire.

At Michele Calò, this rich regional legacy persists in their terroir and especially their award winning, Mjère rosato and Cerasa. Be sure to pay Michele Calò a visit this summer and experience the Apulia land in person.

Michele Calò
Via Masseria Vecchia, 1, 73058 Tuglie LE, Italy


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All the Way Up with Albugnano – Albugnano DOC Red Wines for Spring 2020

Albugnano DOC red wine

The Italian municipality, Albugnano, where Albugnano DOC red wines are produced has the highest elevation within all larger Piemonte region.

Regional Characteristics – Albugnano DOC Red Wines

It is a precariously situated village, and is home to among the coolest climates within Italy where vineyards grow.

Albugnano DOC red wine
The municipality of Castelnuovo Don Bosco – elevation 306 m (1,004 ft) – part of the Albugnano DOC production area.

This colder climate imparts a crisp, yet fruity undertone, which coincidently are not unlike those of the southern Aglianico del Vulture Superiore DOCG reds from Basilicata.

The wine is unique in that Albugnano DOC exudes a freshness unlike other wines from Piemonte. They are lower profile wines and are therefore more affordable.

Albugnano DOC red wine
The municipality of Pino d’Asti – elevation 412 m (1,352 ft) – also, part of the Albugnano DOC production area.

The Albugnano DOC was established in 1997 and the two wines the region produces are rosé (rosato) and red (rosso) wines.

Rosato: at least 85% Nebbiolo with a maximum 15% of Barbera, Bonarda, and/or Freisa wine varieties.

Red wine
Rosso: at least 85% Nebbiolo with a maximum 15% of Barbera, Bonarda, and/or Freisa wine varieties.
Superiore: a rosso that is aged a minimum of one year, including six months in a barrel.


Albugnano DOC red wine
Balangero Chiesa San Giacomo – Catholic church in Balangero, Italy


The fruity wine encompasses hints of raspberry to wild strawberry and is delightfully paired with floral and spicy flavors, as well as balsamic aromas, much like the southern Italian rosé, Alezio DOC (from Apulia).

Producers – Albugnano DOC Red Wines

A few of my favorite producers of Albugnano DOC include:

Alle Tre Colline

This gem will make you appreciate true hospitality, as the Carossa family will welcome you into their quaint vineyard.

Azienda Agrituristica Alle Tre Colline is found in the heart of Monferrato and despite its relatively young history develops a number of delicious wines. #AlleTreColline #cena #Albugnano #Piemonte @ColleManoraWine Click To Tweet

The vineyard was founded in 1999 by Edoardo and Orsolina Carossa and then passed the farm onto their son Franco who now runs it with his wife and their three children.

The company develops 35 hectares of land and hosts beautiful accommodation.

Alle Tre Colline
Vezzolano 60 Albugnano


Ca’ Mariuccia

Ca’ Mariuccia s.s.a. can be found on the Monferrato hills where they run an ethical farm aimed at using sustainable, eco-friendly methods and practices.

In addition to running a successful vineyard, Ca ‘Mariuccia also serves as a Piedmontese agriturismo where visitors can enjoy a range of farming activities. #cena #Albugnano #CaMariuccia #Piemonte @ColleManoraWine Click To Tweet

Their aim is to create an awareness of climate change and a sustainable farming culture while incorporating ancient techniques.

You can have a relaxing stay in their bed and bed and breakfast, enjoy a lovely wine tasting and eat wonderful Italian pizza.

Ca’ Mariuccia
Fraz. San Emiliano, 2 – 14022 – Albugnano (AT)


Badia di Morrona

Badia di Morrona has been run by the Gaslini Alberti family since 1939 and now run a total of 600 hectares, with 110 hectares dedicated purely to the vineyard.

The unique estate can house 120 guests, who can enjoy regular wine tours and breathtaking vistas for any hosted event.

Badia di Morrona
Via del Chianti, 6, 56030 Terricciola – Pisa


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