Tuesday, September 08, 2009

My Italian Wine Journey Continues: Liguria

There's been something of a hiatus in my Italian wine ramblings. The last region I visited was Trentino-Alto Adige--and that was in June. Now that I'm back in the land of many wine shops, I can pick up where I left off. My destination for September is the northwestern curve of Italy: Liguria. Located at the knee of Italy's boot, Liguria doesn't grow many grapes or make much wine--which can make bottlings from this region hard to find. (photo of the crates used for collecting grapes in Cinque Terra by Dom Dada)

But they're worth the search. Ligurian winemakers not only make stunning Vermentinos--perhaps the best known of the region's grapes--they also grow less traveled grapes like Albarola, Pigato, and Rossesse. They also have their own names for grapes such as Dolcetto, which the Ligurians call Ormeasco.

And Ligurian wines go well with the flavors of September, which involve farmer's market basil and tomatoes in the beginning of the month, and rosemary and mushrooms towards the end of the month. The ubiquitous Italian green sauce--pesto--originated in the region (or at least that's what everyone in Liguria proudly says), and whites like Vermentino and Pigato pair beautifully with the spicy, salty sauce. (picture of the vineyards of Cinque Terre by Pay No Mind)

So sip along with me this month as I sample a red and a white wine from Liguria. As always, if you've had some good Ligurian wine you can recommend, please leave those suggestions in the comments below.


Bill from Wine For Newbies said...

Ah, Liguria. One of my favorite whites comes from there: Laura Aschero makes a brilliant Pigato. I just wish more of it was imported to the US market. Sadly, it's not a wine that qualifies as good wine under $20, but it's definitely a good wine.

Claire said...

Intriguing post. I need to search for some of these because I haven't had them, & my curiosity can't have that! =P