Grappa Stravecchia, Distilleria Gualco
Founded in 1870, Distilleria Gualco has been a family run enterprise for 4 generations. The system for producing the Distilleria Gualco’s grappa is a bain-marie pot still. Using a “bain-marie” or “water bath” means that the pot of the grape pomace is not heated directly by fire but it’s surrounded by another pot of boiling water and heated to evaporation. This has the advantage of heating the grapes gently, preventing the grappa from taking on an unpleasant smoky or burnt taste and allows it to slowly evaporate, thus retaining the wine-like characteristics of the grape skins. The fuel to heat the stills is the very same expended grape skins used to produce the grappa itself. “Semigasogeni Autarchici” (Self-sufficient fuels) and the combustible used is the same grape-skins which have already been used to produce the grappa.
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This Dolcetto d’Ovada grappa is aged for 3 years in 1000-litre oak tonneaux. As these barrels are rather large, three years of ageing brings out the complexity and smoothness of the distilled product without drastically increasing the presence of tannins from the wood. The resulting grappa is fruit-forward, with a deep amber color. Spice and dried stone fruit abound!