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The Boston Globe

Food & dining

By the Glass

More than just a fizzy red, Italian Lambrusco is inspiring

A special bottle can change your life. Just ask Matt Mollo, co-owner of the North End wine shop The Wine Bottega. That head-turning pour for Mollo was a fizzy red lambrusco, which he had in Italy in 2010. He and his wife, Adriana, were at a salumeria in Mantova, Lombardy, across the Po River from Emilia-Romagna, the region most associated with these lightly sparkling quaffs. On the banks of a lake, they picnicked and savored a special bottle of Fondo Bozzole “Incantabiss” (“snake charmer” in the local dialect).

Mollo tracked down the producers. Soon, the two were visiting the organic farm of brothers Franco and Mario Accorsi, who grow apples and pears alongside rare varieties of lambrusco, one called ruberti. “I have always been a lover of real lambrusco,” Mollo says. “So finding this unique version from Lombardy put it all over the edge. It was the moment when I knew I had to take the leap of faith and start my own company.” Two years later, he launched SelectioNaturel, and now imports wines from small producers that are, as he emphasizes, “natural and traditionally made.”

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