What is Lambrusco Wine?

Photo of author

By: Tom Valenti


Have you ever tried sparkling red wine with fresh, fruity flavors? Lambrusco is one of the wines that meet those standards. But what exactly is Lambrusco wine? Lambrusco is a type of wine that is produced in the Emilia-Romagna and Lombardy region of Italy.

To discover the characteristics of Lambrusco wines, wines worth trying, and how to pair them with food best, follow this blog.


What is Lambrusco Wine?

Lambrusco is a type of sparkling red wine produced in the Emilia-Romagna and Lombardy regions of Italy. It is made from the Lambrusco grape, a red grape variety known for its high acidity and tannins.

Lambrusco wine can be either red or rosé in color, and it can be still, semi-sparkling, or fully sparkling. The wine has a fruity and slightly sweet taste, with blackberry, raspberry, and cherry flavors.

The wine is typically served chilled and pairs well with various foods, including cured meats, pizza, and pasta dishes. This wine became popular around the world in the 1960s.

Where Does Lambrusco Wine Come From?

Where Does Lambrusco Wine Come From

Lambrusco wine comes from the Emilia-Romagna and Lombardy regions of Italy. These regions are located in the northern part of Italy and are known for their production of high-quality wines.

The Emilia-Romagna region is located in central northern Italy and is known for its production of Lambrusco wine. The region has a long history of winemaking, and the Lambrusco grape has been grown in the region for centuries.

The Lombardy region is located in the northwestern part of Italy and is also known for its production of Lambrusco wine, although to a lesser extent than Emilia-Romagna. The region is home to a variety of different wine styles, including sparkling wines like Franciacorta and still-red wines like Valtellina.

How Is Lambrusco Wine Produced?

How Is Lambrusco Wine Produced

Lambrusco wines can be made using various techniques, depending on the desired style of wine. However, the following three techniques are commonly used:

  1. Martinotti or Charmat method: This is the most common method used for producing Lambrusco wine. It involves a secondary fermentation in a pressurized tank, which produces carbon dioxide and creates bubbles in the wine. This method is used to produce semi-sparkling or fully sparkling wines.
  2. Classic Method or Traditional method: This method is similar to the Champagne method and involves a secondary fermentation in the bottle. The wine is aged on its lees (dead yeast cells) for several years, which gives it a complex flavor and aroma profile. This method is used to produce high-end, premium Lambrusco wines
  3. Blowing Carbon Dioxide: The production of “artificial” sparkling wines involves a technique called blowing carbon dioxide. This method involves infusing carbon dioxide into compressed autoclaves filled with wine. While this technique is faster than other methods, it is not considered ideal for achieving the best results.

Taste And Flavor Profile

Lambrusco wine comes in three different varieties: dry (secco), semi-sweet (semi secco), and sweet (dulce). The taste of Lambrusco wine can vary depending on the specific style and producer. However, Lambrusco wines are generally known for their fruity and slightly sweet taste, with blackberry, raspberry, and cherry flavors. They also typically have a high acidity and tannin content, which gives the wine a refreshing and slightly bitter finish.

The level of sweetness in Lambrusco wine can also vary, from very dry to semi-sweet to sweet. Some Lambrusco wines may also have a slightly bitter or herbal note, depending on the specific grape variety and production methods used.

Some Of The Best Lambrusco Wine Varieties To Try

Currently, the top-quality Lambrusco wines are produced as slightly dry (secco) or just a little sweet (semi secco) and are typically made with a semi-sparkling or frizzante style. There are four types of wine, and a complete range of styles, and you need to try them.

Lambrusco di Sorbara

Lambrusco wine. The wine is made from the Sorbara grape variety, known for its delicate floral aroma and high acidity. Lambrusco di Sorbara has a light pink color and a fruity taste, with notes of strawberry and raspberry. It is typically produced as a semi-sparkling wine with a slight effervescence that gives it a refreshing and lively character. Lambrusco di Sorbara pairs well with a variety of foods, including cured meats, seafood, and especially spicy Thai and Indian dishes.

Lambrusco Grasparossa

Lambrusco Grasparossa is a red wine made from the Charmat winemaking process. It is known for its deep red color, rich flavor profile, and slightly sweet taste. Lambrusco Grasparossa has a complex flavor profile with blackberry, cherry, and blueberry notes. It is typically produced in a semi-sparkling style, with a light effervescence that its refreshing character. Lambrusco Grasparossa pairs well with a variety of dishes such as sausages, and barbecue ribs.

Lambrusco Maestri

Lambrusco Maestri is a dry and full-bodied style of Lambrusco wine, đậm vị nho, có bọt kem mềm và hương vị socola. It is made from the Maestri grape variety, known for its high tannin levels and deep red color. It has a complex flavor profile with blackberry, black cherry, and licorice notes. It is a full-bodied wine with a dry finish and a hint of bitterness. Lambrusco Maestri pairs well with rich, savory dishes, such as grilled meats, stews, and hearty pasta dishes.

Lambrusco Salamino

This type of Lambrusco grape is named after its cylindrical salami-shaped bunches. The resulting wine has a pleasant aroma reminiscent of cherries and violets and combines the structure and creaminess of Lambrusco Grasparossa with the deep color and tannins. Lambrusco Salamino wines are often produced in sweet styles such as semi secco and dolce to balance out their tannins and are surprisingly a great pairing with burgers. This variety may be labeled Reggiano Lambrusco Salamino or Lambrusco Salamino di Santa Croce.

Food Pairings

Lambrusco wine pairs well with a variety of foods, depending on its style and level of sweetness. Here are some food pairing suggestions for different types of Lambrusco:

  • Dry/secco Lambrusco: Pair with rich and savory dishes, such as roasted meats, stews, and aged cheeses. It also goes well with pizza, pasta with tomato-based sauces, and grilled vegetables.
  • Semi-sweet/semi secco Lambrusco: This style pairs well with spicy foods, such as Mexican and Indian cuisine. It also complements grilled meats, charcuterie boards, and pasta dishes with meat-based sauces.
  • Sweet/dulce Lambrusco: This style is great with desserts, such as fruit tarts, chocolate cake, and custards. It also pairs well with spicy Asian cuisine and blue cheese.


What is Lambrusco Wine Good For?

Like other red wines, Lambrusco is a great source of antioxidants, which have been shown to prevent the growth of cancer-causing cells. The presence of resveratrol in Lambrusco can also reduce the likelihood of estrogen hormones converting into breast cancer.

What Is The Best Way To Drink Lambrusco?

Lambrusco wine can be enjoyed in different ways depending on personal preference. It is generally recommended to serve Lambrusco slightly chilled at around 50-54°F (10-12°C) to bring out its refreshing and fruity flavors.

Is Lambrusco Low Alcohol?

Lambrusco has high acidity levels and low to medium alcohol levels at around 8% -12% by volume.

How Long Does Lambrusco Last Once Open?

Once opened, Lambrusco wine can last about 1 to 5 days if stored properly. To maximize its shelf life, the opened bottle should be re-corked or sealed tightly with a wine stopper and stored in the refrigerator. The cooler temperature will slow down the oxidation process and help to preserve the wine’s flavor and aroma.

Is Lambrusco Popular In Italy?

Yes, Lambrusco is a popular wine in Italy, particularly in Emilia-Romagna and Lombardy, where it is produced. It has been a staple of Italian culture and cuisine for centuries and is often enjoyed with traditional Italian dishes such as cured meats, pasta, and pizza.


So, What is Lambrusco Wine?  Lambrusco is a slightly sparkling red wine made from grapes grown in the Emilia-Romagna and Lombardy regions of Italy. It has high acidity, low to medium alcohol levels, and mild tannins.

Lambrusco comes in various styles ranging from dry to sweet, with each type having its unique flavor profile. It pairs well with a variety of dishes, from pizza to desserts, depending on the style and sweetness level. If you’re looking for a unique red wine that can be enjoyed alone or paired with food, Lambrusco may be a perfect choice.

Photo of author

Tom Valenti

Chef/Owner of both Ouest and ‘Cesca, and the Executive Chef of Le Cirque, Alison on Dominick, and Butterfield 81.

Leave a Comment