Ka Mancine: Delicious wine from a tiny hamlet
Just a few miles from the glitz and glamour of Monaco, Nice and the Cote d’Azur is the tiny Italian hamlet of Dolceacqua. Located in the beautiful border lands of the French and Italian Rivieras, a stranger who was beamed down would have a hard time believing they were within a short drive of some of the most expensive real estate in Europe.
In Dolceacqua there are no casinos, just terraced vineyards that are home to one of the most rare wine grapes along the Mediterranean: Rossese. Also known as Tibouren in Provence, this variety is almost extinct in France. The Rossese di Dolceacqua DOC now preserves most of the vineyards that are planted to this unique grape.
At Ka Mancine, owners Roberta Rapaci and Maurizio Anfosso lovingly tend to about 7.5 acres of the 200 that exist in the DOC. The vines are all bush trained and planted on the classic terraces that Ligurian wine is known for. Ka Mancine grows and produces only Rossese. It is their passion and as such they produce some of the finest examples of their village wine.
Ka Mancine comprises two separate vineyards: Galeae and Beragna. Both are on steep slopes of schiste and marl, typical of these hills that rise rapidly to meet the Alps, and sit at about 1200 feet above sea level. Beragna is entirely own-rooted (pre-phylloxera) vines planted in 1872! Galeae was replanted with a selection massale of similarly old vines in 1998. Galeae is the more forward and fleshy while Beragna is more on the mineral, savory side.
The Rossese of Ka Mancine perfectly capture the unique ability of this wine to be both light and airy and still have deep, sappy fruit and texture. They are perfect food wines, for pastas, cheeses and charcuterie of course, but also with tougher pairings like curry or Korean bbq. If you haven’t had Rossese in your life, now is the time to try it.