The autoctonal Montepulciano is mainly cultivated in the regions Le Marche and Abruzzo where it forms the basis of most DOCs for red wine. Having the same name as the town Montepulciano in Tuscany, often leads to some misunderstanding because the wine there is produced almost exclusively from Sangiovese grapes.
The Montepulciano vine thrives at 200 to 300m above sea level, but can be planted at altitudes of up to 600m on the southern slopes. Shoot and ripeness of the grapes are late and therefore not suited to northern zones. The vines prefer light limy terrain, but can also grow in loamy soil. The grape clusters are of medium size, cylindrical and not so densely packed. The grapes are also medium sized, oval and have a thick skin which is violet/black in colour. The wine profits from the thick skin which produces a dark ruby red pigment and a high percentage of polyphenols. It is full-bodied, has a robust structure, a rich taste, and a low percentage of acid. The high level of tannin provides accents at an early age and imparts longevity. Due to a longer ripening process the wine becomes smooth and harmonious.
By meticulous work in the vineyard, by restricting the harvest, picking at the optimal moment and the appropriate care and attention in the cellar, the Montepulciano reaches its enormous potential resulting in a well balanced, full-flavoured wine with a long life expectancy. The wine gains further complexity, sophistication and subtlety by the careful deployment of small oak barrels.