Vigne del Ruchè dei sette comuni astigiani

The Ruchè

The wine that made the territory of Monferrato Asti known to the world with its hills and vines.

The Ruchè di Castagnole Monferrato Docg

The Ruchè di Castagnole Monferrato Docg comes from the red grape variety bearing the same name and grown, as dictated by Ministerial Decree 8th October 2010, only in seven villages: Castagnole Monferrato, Grana, Montemagno, Portacomaro, Refrancore, Scurzolengo and Viarigi.

It’s a medium size grape, rich on sugar and aromatic forerunners. The wine is a ruby red, slightly aromatic one, with scents of dried rose, violet and spices like black pepper, smooth and balanced. It is cultivated on a total of 150 hectares of vineyards nowadays.


There’s a lot of tales about the origin of the Ruchè and its name, starting from a possible link with a benedictine monastery, now totally lost, dedicated to Saint Rochus once exsisting in the area; another tale refers the origin of the name to the steep hills on which the vineyards were planted, called “rocche”.

Someone said the grape was introduced in the area by monks coming from Burgundy, but a recent study revealed a parentage with two local grapes: Malvasia Aromatica di Parma and Croatina (Ruffa, Raimondi, Boccacci, Abbà, Schneider 2016).


Leaving the world of tales and mystery, the modern history of Ruchè is well documented: the Ruchè, already known and cultivated centuries ago, was considered till the seventies a secondary wine, but the parish of Castagnole Monferrato, don Giacomo Cauda, saw in this wine the potential of a great wine and recovered an old vineyard belonging to the church, and cultivated it stealing time from his soul shepherd’ mission: someone considered him a strange kind of parish, maybe slightly mad…

With the help of the mayor, Lidia Bianco, and the village teacher, Romana Valenzano, the Ruchè obtained the Appellation of Origin in 1987 and later reached the Docg in 2010: these are the milestones of an history yet to be written.

The Ruchè is now the backbone of the economy for this area of Monferrato and the reason of its reputation.


Food pairings

Even if Ruchè pairs well with local dishes, like aged cheeses and elaborate meat dishes, its characteristics can bring to stunning pairings with dishes from different cuisines, and this is the reason of a part of its success. The smoothness and olfactory depth makes Ruchè an ideal pairing for spicy and aromatic dishes, rich of ginger for example, like most oriental dishes, and, to break the “rules” of paring, with tuna-based dishes. So, Ruchè is so versatile that became a real international wine.

A story to tell.

Video on the 20 years of d.o.c. of one of the most important wines of Asti with memories and memories of the elderly winemakers of Ruchè.