Monday, July 1, 2013

A well structured white for summer - Friuli's Ribolla Gialla

The wine region of Friuli in the northeast corner of Italy has a number of unique indigenous grapes.  As July begins to heat up, perhaps its the best time to cool off with the unique Friulian grape Ribolla Gialla.

When I attended the IWINETC blogger trip to Friuli, I visited a number of local wineries that grew the grape and fermented single varietal wines from it.  These medium bodied wines had flavors of both citrus and stone fruits, lively acidity, and very good length.  It could be consumed on its own, and it's weighty enough for grilled chicken, pork dishes, or served, as it often is in Friuli itself, with the heavenly (and local) San Daniela prosciutto.

One of my favorite Ribolla Giallas I tried in Italy was from the winery Zorzettig. We were hosted by the wonderful winery staff, who treated us to prosciutto, savory tarts, and cheeses, as we tried their Myo Ribolla Gialla.  This is a DOC wine from the sub region of Friuli Colli Orientale.  I was struck by the balance of the wine, and how wonderful all the local Friuian snacks tasted with it.  The line of wines that include Myo all include a natural creature under a wine glass on the label - a constant reminder that the winery regards its role as standing alongside the natural world.  They consider themselves guardians of their vineyard's lands, and seek to respect the native flora and fauna as they grow their grapes.

Friuli is a cool, wet climate, and white wines do very well here.  For summer fare, including seafood, light sauce pastas, cheese plates, and more, try a glass of this delicious wine that is distinctively Friulian.

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