I am back to my indigenous grape varieties series and this week I am writing about Livornese Bianco and Lumassina. The former grape hails from Tuscany which is the site of the picture above. The latter from Liguria which is shown in the picture below.
Neither grape is seen that often but both are only used to make wine rather than existing separately as table grapes. Livornese bianco does not come from the area around Livorno but rather from the one around Massa Carrara, not so far from Liguria in fact. This grape is usually blended with other local white varieties.
Lumassina is instead from the province of Savona in Liguria. It is often blended with another white variety called Bosco. It is a vigorous variety. One winery that is available in the United States that makes Lumassina is Punta Crena. I first met them many years ago at a tasting in New York. They are now brought in by Kermit Lynch so in very good hands indeed.
Lumassina is a great wine to drink with summer fare. It has nice acidity and mineral notes as well as the bitter almond finish typical of many Italian white wines. I have never tried one but it is also supposed to make lovely sparkling wine. Next week I will tackle the Lambrusco family of varieties and then move on to the letter “M” which should take me the rest of the year to complete as there are so many varieties that begin with that letter. I have thus far written 140 posts on Italian indigenous varieties on this blog over the last seven (7) years since I started this project for AltaCucina in 2009. I just found this video where I interviewed Paolo Vannini from Alta Cucina and Luca Maroni. It’s interesting to hear what people thought in 2010.