10 native Italian varieties worth seeking out

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italian grapes, italy, italian wine, italy guide,
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Ribolla Gialla & Schioppettino

Both wines of Friuli Venezia Giulia, made with native grapes of the same name. The latter is a lovely medium-bodied red wine loaded with small black fruit and green peppercorn notes, and on a resounding comeback after risking extinction in the 1970s. The former is made in both dry and sparkling styles, with some producers treating it like a red wine, favouring long skin contact. Highly touted by some, I found the wines too similar and a bit disappointing. Ribolla is best when fresh with citrus, floral and white pepper aromas.

Try: Bastianich, Vigne Orsone Ribolla Gialla, Colli Orientali del Friuli 2010 

Bright and fresh, with floral, lemony and tangerine aromas and flavours. You won’t want to put the glass back down. 16.5pts/20
Price: £13.75 Bibendum Wines
Drink: 2012–2013
Alc: 12.5%

italian grapes, italy, italian wine, italy guide,
italian grapes, italy, italian wine, italy guide,
italian grapes, italy, italian wine, italy guide,
italian grapes, italy, italian wine, italy guide,