Cougar Vineyard & Winery wants ciliegiolo recognized in US

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Cougar Vineyard & Winery assistant winemaker Jake Rentner moves a barrel of ciliegiolo wine. Cougar has chosen to produce a single varietal wine from the grape and is having the wine certified. The wine will be available in limited quantity. Valley News/Shane Gibson photo
What’s ciliegiolo, you ask? “There’s not a lot of information on it, but they thought it was like the mother of sangiovese,” Rick Buffington, co-owner of Cougar Vineyards & Winery, said. “But then they came back and said, ‘No, it's not the mother of sangiovese, but it’s in the sangiovese family.’” Regardless of where it comes from, Rick Buffington and his wife, Jennifer, along with the help of friend Pete Anderson, are going to petition the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau to get the grape recognized so they can produce and sell wine made exclusively from the grape, which produced enough fruit for the first time to do so this year. Cougar Vineyard & Winery used a basket press to extr
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