Bolé wine tasting notes and review: A Star Is Born!
Bolé is the newest of the creative wines that have been made to compete with Prosecco. It is the Romagna answer to the sparkling wonder of Treviso. A wine that presents itself with a winking label and great expectations. And the Bolé is just the beginning of a new line of wines representing the DOC Spumante Romagna and bearing the name Millebolle: a gleaming brand.
But before talking about the Bolé wine, a premise is necessary: this wine comes from two giants of the wine industry, Cevico and Caviro, which have packaged a commercial wine and launched a colossal advertising campaign to resurrect, “the old Romagna Sciampagna (Champagne).” A wine that in the nineteenth century was produced from Imola to San Mauro Pascoli with some success, but which then died and was buried, thank goodness.
You read that correctly, Sciampagna Romagnola, a Romagna Champagne: can you believe it? But you are wondering if there are precious marls and huge limestone deposits in Romagna, an incredible and unique terroir? Is there is the influence of the Atlantic ocean, a crazy temperature range, and unprecedented production expertise to justify the birth of Millebolle sparkling wines…
No, none of this; indeed, Romagna is a plain with unprecedented fertility, excellent if you want to grow apricots and peaches, but fatal if you want to produce high-quality wines, apart from the small happy oasis of the Longanesi di Bagnacavallo. It is no coincidence that most Romagna boutique wineries grow vines in the Apennines.
You know what is not lacking in Romagna? Trebbiano is cultivated with intensive methods, with frightening yields per hectare. Babini, the owner of Vigne dei Boschi winery, produces fantastic and biodynamic Trebbiano. With JPB1, he has converted a vineyard, once used for industrial production, into a biodynamic jewel, but we are talking about a wine god.
Having said that, we have not yet said a single word about Bolé wine, but it’s ok. The wine itself is not very important: it is its genesis that fascinates. In fact, an important piece of the puzzle is still missing: the new sparkling DOC Spumante Romagna, created to justify a wine like Bolé.
If we want to examine it from a corporate survival point of view, it is brilliant! First we rediscover the historical roots of a wine that died a century ago, then we create a DOC to give it dignity, and then we make a colossal marketing campaign. Okay, one of the producers also produces Tavernello, a dull wine in a brick. We don’t want to point the finger at those who drink the Tavernello. Respect for everyone; the liver is yours. But coincidentally, the name Caviro does not appear on the label. Of course, they made a brand new company Bolé SRL, to manage the new business…
However, one thing that casts disturbing shadows on Romagna is that this wine is a DOC. What do we know about this glittering DOC Spumante Romagna? The grapes must be produced in Romagna, but then they can also be vinified in many other regions, like Marche, Veneto, and Conegliano, to name a few places with which Trebbiano gets along well, then in Lombardy, and why not also in Piedmont.
And, as previously stated, selling short is a wise move; this summer, the Romagna Riviera was submerged by rivers of Bolè, but in the long run, this obscures the Romagna wine revival movement. But above all, it ridicules the authority of the Romagna DOC. The concept of territoriality and craftsmanship of Romagna wine. The wine as it should be made, i.e., by a winemaker in his winery and not by a giant wine factory.
And that a DOC is shaped so easily, starting from nothing to create commercial opportunities without taking into account the characteristics of the territory, is disturbing. And we are not talking about Sassicaia’s revolution and the subsequent Bolgheri emergence, where conditions actually existed to start a genesis process. No, we are speaking about industrial wine.
So at this point, the real question is whether DOC is really a guarantee of quality for the consumer, and does it make sense to exist?
What good is a DOC if they can change it whenever they want?
A guarantee for the consumer?
Or a shield?
A boost to the sales?
But shouldn’t DOC be a defense of a specific terroir?
And keep in mind that we are in Emilia Romagna, the region Forbes said has the best food in the world. A region that offers incredible dishes and the greatest number of DOP, IGP, STG with 291 products.
Maybe we should ask ourselves two questions and ask ourselves if the DOC is truly a guarantee of quality for those who buy it.
The same goes of course also for Prosecco, given the rhythms with which its production boundaries are widened, but we will talk about it another time.
But the reason for this operation is simple: prosecco is fashionable; even the nearby sparkling Pignoletto is skyrocketing, not to mention the avalanches of hectoliters of Lambrusco sold all over the globe.
So what do we do in Romagna? Why don’t we produce a nice sparkling wine for the Chinese market or the UK?
And that’s all, now we can finally talk about the wine produced by Bolé s.r.l. Faenza, owned by Caviro and Cevico.
Ok, but at least is this Bolè sparkling wine good?
No, it’s a dull, tasteless wine that doesn’t smell good. Huge amounts of sulfur dioxide ruin both the wine’s smell and the way it tastes.
By now, industrial wines have reached a degree of “potability” that amazes: they are not bad, but they are only built without soul or depth. They are like Fanta or Coke, you can drink them without dying, maybe.
It goes down well if you drink it cold because they had the decency to make it dry. So it does not have that cloying fruitiness that tends almost to sweetness, but it is a wine with a persistence that fades in a few seconds.
If this is the “Romagna Sciampagna” that made French Champagne tremble, there is still a long way to go.
At this point, in order to compete with the French, who also use Trebbiano, the next step is to produce Cognac and Armagnac (two very serious AOCs) from Romagna, and then come up with a catchy name!
Bolè, a beautiful story that should not have been told…