Pop quiz: Pick the odd one out from the following four grape types.
Trebbiano, pecarino, passerina and chardonnay.
If you said chardonnay you might be right. I’d say trebbiano.
The reason I propose trebbiano as the interloper is that the other three have distinctive aromas. The most grown grape in Italy (if we can believe any official stats from there) is really the all-purpose flour of the Italian wine world. Trebbiano’s a solid base from which to boost more aromatic and worldly grapes. It’s a role she’s come to accept.
Chardonnay is the regional outlier here. It’s French and so could be seen as the stranger in the bottle, however her small but noticeable contribution to body and mouth feel makes it seem at home.
This wine is straw yellow and elegant. The nose is of mild lemon oil, unripe peach and some small minerality. After airing for a while a hint of rose petal arrives on the scene, but the overall impression remains of zesty, lively fruit.
On the palate the aromas precisely follow through. The wine is full-bodied with delicious acids matching the citrus-y floral-y notes. Chardonnay arrives late to the party, imparting that roundness of fully ripe fruit without the sugar.
The finish is strong, clean, structured and crisp.
This is the kind of drink that one could – as I did – sip over the course of an evening, contemplating the history, climate and life of the people who made it. Key is the blend of the pecorino and passerina, relatively unknown grapes which create what the winemaker wanted (according the the bumpf): perfume with integrity.
$9.99. Seriously? This makes fifteen buck pinot grigios look positively crooked.