Most people think of hearty, acidic reds or Pinot Grigio when they think of Italian wines. But with over 1,000 grape varietals, Italy has a much wider variety of wines to offer - especially in whites.
I've talked about Italian Soave before - a crisp, citrusy, dry white that goes well with just about anything you want to eat on a warm summer day (o.k., think picnic, not BBQ). You can generally find a good one in your local store for around $15 - $20. For those who live near a Moore Bros., look for Cantina del Castello.
Yet Soave is not the only Italian white alternative to Pinot Grigio. There are hundreds of varietals so it's no surprise to discover a completely new grape. Last summer I had the pleasure of trying an Italian Pinot Nero (white wine made from the Pinot Noir grape) and last week I was introduced to Taburno Serra Docile Coda Di Volpe. Coda Di Volpe is a white grape I'd never tried (and until recently, the wine instructor who introduced me had never heard of it either). What a revelation! Fruit forward, yet dry, acidic wine with tropical notes and a great body that lightly coats the tongue. This past weekend I brought a bottle to a gathering featuring Asian food and three of us easily kicked the bottle in about 30 minutes! I knew it was a hit when my friend, Laurie D., who has a discerning palate where whites are concerned, was asking me where I picked it up and how much it was (Amanti Vino, $24.99).
So get out there and discover a grape you haven't tried and please be sure to share your finding with the rest of us!
Until the next sniff, sip or quaff,