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Amazing Summer Whites from Italy
By Marita Leonard
W hen most people think of Italian white wines, Pinot Grigio is all that comes to mind. If we can get past the "Griggy" there is a whole world of beautiful, aromatic wines to be found around Italy. As summer approaches, this is a great time to familiarize ourselves with some of Italy's amazing choices of whites beyond Pinot Grigio:
Tocai-Friulano, a versatile wine with plump peach flavors with a spark of cleansing acidity, the signature wine of the Friulli-Venezia Giullia region. Cool and delicate single-vineyard Soave from Veneto. Trentino-Alto Adige, in the Dolomites next to southern Austria, offers us spicy and exotic Gewürztraminers, which are said to have originated in the Alto Adige town of Termeno. The exceptional terroir in Piedmont produces elegant Burgundian-like Chardonnay.
The whites of Southern Italy are sunny and young, mostly aged for less than six months in stainless steel. Meant to drink right away, the lively acidity and freshness of these wines enliven the palate and leave your mouth watering for more. Try some Vernaccia with some prosciutto and melon. Sipping on some Verdicchio while enjoying a plate of grilled seafood will whisk you away to the Adriatic coast.
I had the opportunity to taste some pretty amazing wines at the Marc de Grazia portfolio tasting which took place at Emeril's on South Beach. Six winemakers from different regions of Italy introduced their latest vintages and olive oils, while Llano de Grazia guided us on our wine tour and showcase the vast selections of the portfolio.
Fontaleoni Vernaccia di San Gimignano, Tuscany 2002 . $12
Tenuta di Tavignano Verdicchio "Misco", Castelli dei Jesi 2000. $20
Gini Soave Classico Superiore, Veneto 2003. $16.99
Paolo Scavino "Sorriso", Piedmont 2001. $30