2021 Poderi dal Nespoli “Famoso Rubicone” IGT, Emilia Romagna, Italy (Alcohol 12%, Residual Sugar 6 g/l) LCBO $12.70 until July 16th, then $13.70 (750ml bottle)
Famoso (also known as Rambela, Uva Rambella, Valdoppiese, and Bianco di Spinello) is an aromatic grape grown for centuries in the Romagna area of Italy’s Emilia Romagna. It’s a variety that has always been highly regarded, being described very favourably by experts such as Pasqualini and Pasqui (1875), De Bosis (1876), and Marzotto (1925). It is a grape with quite a bit of history, which makes me wonder why it’s not more widely appreciated outside of its homeland. Which brings me to this super-affordable example.
The nose is pleasingly aromatic, with floral notes reminiscent of roses wrapped around a decidedly ripe peach core. Some have compared this grape to Moscato Bianco, but I never tend to find such enchanting florality in wines made with that grape.
The palate is medium weight, pleasingly fresh, and ripe, echoing the peach on the nose but here augmented with pineapple, mango, and honeydew melon. It’s a dry wine, but all that tropical ripeness is most alluring, and it finishes off with a fantastic lime/lemon zest.
Although this is a delightfully simple wine, it makes for a most enjoyable glass (or two). Serve it nice and chilled on the dock or beside the pool. While I’m not sure that it particularly requires food, I feel it would accompany lighter cuisine with relative ease.
Even at $13.70, this bottle exhibits seriously terrific value and drinks better than most sub-$20 Pinot Grigios out there. Its charms have definitely won me over. Highly recommended and a great introduction to this mostly overlooked grape.
(Three and a half out of a possible five apples)
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