Wine Wednesday: Bianchetta Genovese from Azienda Agricola “La Ricolla”

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This is the first post I have written in November. The first week of the month I was very busy with a presentation and then with clients in town so I have a small excuse. The second week however, I had an accident, fell and hit my head. I had to go to the emergency room, have a CT scan and pray that I didn’t cause any damage to myself. I tripped trying to put on my son’s coat in a corridor of his language school and fell back and smashed my head into the wall. It’s been a week and I am finally feeling like myself and looking forward to getting back to my blog. Today’s Wine Wednesday is the first wine I have had in a week and boy did it taste good.

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This wine hails from Liguria. Liguria is bordered by France to the west, Piedmont to the north, and Emilia-Romagna and Tuscany to the east. It lies on the Liguria Sea. It is a very narrow strip of land between the Ligurian Sea, the Alps and the Appenines. The region runs from Ventimiglia to La Spezia. Some 65% of the region is mountainous and 35% hills. It has 350km (217.5 miles) of coastline. None of the region can be considered a plateau which is interesting.

This week’s wine is made with an indigenous grape called Bianchetta Genovese. It is a delicate grape which can easily be impacted by mold and parasites. It is best away grown away from the heat and the sea so it is grown on hills. It looks like a bush and it is hard to train. It is a thin skinned, small grape and it grows in a long bunch.

This particular wine is from Azienda Agricola “La Ricolla” and is listed under the Golfo del Tigullio–Portofino DOC. The wines from this DOC have good persistence and length. They come from the valleys near Sestri Levante.

This producer is imported by PGM wines to the New York area. Daniele Parma who owns this winery believes that wines are made in the vineyard or “il vino si fa in vigna.” This particular wine is fresh and fruity and is an easy drinking wine with good acidity and minerality. This is the 2014 which was still drinking well despite a few years of age on it. The color had become more golden but I liked it a lot. I also like the low alcohol on the wine, 12.5%. When I first moved to Italy, all of the wines were around 12.5% maybe 13% for the reds. Of course climate change has helped to change this part of the equation but producers have also pushed alcohol levels because of an idea that that is what the market wants. I am always happy to see producers who try to keep the alcohol level at a minimum.

As a welcome back to wine, this one really was special. I am a huge fan of Ligurian wines in general and have just given my second presentation on this topic. I will be doing another one in the months ahead in a different format. Stay tuned. Happy #winewednesday.

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