Once upon a time in Texas, there was a girl with an appetite and a dream...


The (Not-So) Weekly Wino: February 8th

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?

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I sure loves me a bargain. Sounds yummy.

2/08/2007 7:44 AM

Blogger nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

good wine for under $20? very nice.

2/08/2007 8:05 AM

Blogger Tracie P. said...

jenn and nyc--yes, it was nice :)

HHHHHHHAAAAAH. please forgive my very unforgiveable spelling errors,repitions, etc. i had to hammer this post out way too quickly, as you can see.

by the way, are grape varietals supposed to be capitalized? anyone? YOu know, schioppettino with an "S" or an "s?"

2/08/2007 8:40 AM

Blogger Tracie P. said...

oh yeah, and the run-ons, fragments, and general grammar offenses...

2/08/2007 8:42 AM

Blogger BecsLifeOnline said...

I seriously think I'm going to have to do my homework on wines. I love wine but I usually choose which one to buy in terms of which is the prettiest label or the most interesting shape or colour of the bottle. *Gasp* Shock! Ha ha yes, I'm probably the one they label the "dream consumer" in the marketing and advertising industry.

2/08/2007 8:47 AM

Blogger Susan in Italy said...

How interesting that a red would taste "green" like a green pepper. Sounds light and summery. Do you think they sell this nationwide?

2/09/2007 9:58 AM

Blogger Madelyne said...

when it comes to wines I have to admit I know nothing, even after doing the whole wine tasting tours in the Hunter Valley (one of Australia's wine Counties) So now if I buy something & I like it, I buy more.

2/10/2007 6:04 PM

Blogger Victoria Williams said...

Thanks for the wine rec. It sounds great and I've always heard good things about Cabernet Franc. Just finished reading two books by Jennifer Rosen about wine (she also has a web page). Really enjoyed both books. I will look for this wine here in Idaho....but we know how that will probably go........

2/12/2007 9:57 AM

Blogger Tracie P. said...

i should have mentioned that this label probably wouldn't be found outside of a 30 mile radius of where i bought it...but i'm sure there are far more stunning examples to found in your local wine store--this was a simple one!

i guess i'll try to concentrate on the more internationally available ones :)

and thanks for visiting!

2/12/2007 12:55 PM

Blogger Riccardo said...

Dear Tracy, we would like to invite you to taste the best wines of Tuscany in occasion of our event of 11 and 12 march in Lido di Camaiore (near Viareggio, Tuscany, near the see). I know, it is not so close to Ischia, but we will be so happy... we like very much the way you describe our country and your love for Italy.... Cheers. Riccardo
(from www.acquabuona.it - ricfar@tiscali.it)

2/14/2007 5:27 AM


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