This past trip to Italy, some of my favorite red wine makers showed me their white wines. Italians aren’t as regimented in their allegiance to red wine as we seem to be in America. In America the sign of having arrived as real wine aficionados is to embrace all that is red. Medical news stories hawk the health benefits of resveratrol, never mind that if you drank enough red wine to take advantage of the benefits of resveratrol, you’d probably first die of liver poisoning.
The British wine experts also made red wine a priority. Harry Waugh was reported to have said “The first duty of wine is to be red.” For anyone who wanted to be considered a serious wine person, one had to know their red wine.
Over time, I’ve come to think, like my Italian cousins, that red wine isn’t always the best choice for a meal. Many of the dishes we have require something more delicate. Weather conditions also taken into account, sometimes a beefy Super Tuscan or a high acid, tannic Nebbiolo is just too much for summers in Texas. Or many places in the Northern Hemisphere these days.
The reality is, I love white wine. And many of my wine expert friends do too. It’s not that we don’t love red wine; we just don’t love it exclusively. But walking the aisles of a wine store and asking people what they are looking for, by and large, most of them think they need a red wine. And so it goes.
The following wines are selections I tasted from the last trip. These are wines that red wine lovers can learn to love. And there are a couple of wines just for the white wine fanatics that I call my friends. Here they are.
written and photographed (with the exception of the Vignalta shot) by Alfonso Cevola limited rights reserved On the Wine Trail in Italy
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