I've always wanted to go to Friuli because it's a great wine producing region and it is home to one of the best prosciuttos (my love!) in the world, Prosciutto di San Daniele
. I'll tell you about the trip and my foodie pilgrimage next week, but for now I want to talk about this here wine on left.
Friuli grows quite a few autochthonous wines (Tocai Friulano, Ribolla Gialla, Picolit, Verduzzo, Pignolo, Schioppettino, Refosco, Tazzelenghe, and another few that I'm sure to have let out), as well as international varietals to great success such as Merlot, Chardonnay, Cabernets Franc and Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc etc. I'll post about Picolit and Schioppettino, and try to tell you about the region's D.O.C.s and D.O.C.G.s (as well as a Sauvignon Blanc that made me so excited to have taste buds) in the upcoming Winos.
Back to the Cabernet Franc...
Originally a French varietal with some of my favorites coming from the Loire Valley (please feel free to add to the list of its other homes), the vine has blossomed in Italy's northeast corner. I found that Cabernet Franc was served on tap in many simple osterie along with the native Tocai, so I knew better than to dismiss it as just-another-international-varietal-coming-to-take-over-the-natives. And this bottle was one of the cheaper ones, which made it quite attractive.
I wanted to take home at least 6 different wines and I completely disagree that I should have to spend more than 10 euro a bottle to have a successful meet-and-greet with the Friuliani. "Old vine this" and "single vineyard that" is the last step in the getting-to-know-you process for me, because I want to discover the truth about every wine I encounter. I want to meet the peasants before I dine with the royalty, for they are what represent the genuine flavor and simple life of the local culture. I want to see refosco naked before it gets all gussied like the others, get it?
I shall get right to the point dear, patient readers and suspend my metaphor freefall. This wine was fun. I'm on one of those things that starts with a "b" and ends with an "udget," and this one delivered. It had a light ruby color with red berry flavors, black pepper, and a very green note. This was a new experience for me in a red wine, and I couldn't get enough of it. It was maybe like fresh jalapeno, or bell pepper, or something leafy and herbal-ly. I'm sure there's someone out there who knows just what I am yapping about and can help me put a name on that taste.
You can see that this humble bottle generously gave more than its expected share of complexity at 5 euro and that is always a nice surprise. Anyway, who doesn't love a bargain?
Labels: Friuli, Weekly Wino, wine