This week’s wine of the week is from Liguria, a Pigato D.O.C. 2013 from Terre Bianche. The winery is located in the town of Dolceacqua. A well-known red wine comes from that area, Rossese di Dolceacqua but today I am writing about the lovely Pigato 2013 that I tasted this year at Vinitaly. I met Filippo Rondelli about four years ago at a tasting during that same fair. I see him at least once a year at the OperaWine event held by the Wine Spectator and Vinitaly/Veronafiere that he is often asked to participate in with one of his wines.
Filippo, like many Ligurians, is somewhat reserved and quiet, except when he is extolling the virtues of his wonderful wines. Apparently the winery was created by a relative, Tommaso Rondelli, in 1870. The winery is named “Terre Bianche” to reflect the white soils around their area. They make three red wines and three whites as well as olive oil. Filippo took over the winery in the late 1990s from his father and uncle.
Dolceacqua is in the part of Liguria known as the Ponente. The winery is not far from Bordighera and Ventimiglia. They make about 60,000 bottles a year and Filippo said they run out of stock every year. The area has mostly white and red clay soils and sandstone. The Pigato comes from a vineyard at 400 meters above sea level. It had nice white fruit and floral aromas and flavors. I also found a considerable amount of sapidity and minerality in the wine which I love. Pigato is said to be related to another Ligurian grape variety, Vermentino. The winery is all about the terroir of the vineyards and this Pigato showed that philosophy as well.
While I had this lovely wine during Vinitaly, I can imagine sitting outside either in the hills or by the sea in Liguria and really enjoying it with seafood or pasta or even on its own. On a dreary day like today in New York, thinking about this wine and Liguria brings a smile to my face.