Chardonnay Blanc de Blanc: Ivaldi’s Andrea DOCG Alta Langa #ItalianFWT

Italy is a land full of fascinating and unusual grapes that are indigenous or autochthonous, meaning that they have been there for a long long time, if not forever or original, or adapted to that place so much as to be unique. Read more about this topic here with tasting notes and pairings for several very rare Italian wines. In fact, that is one of my favorite aspects of Italian wines: there are so many interesting grapes to discover! And I’ve been on quest at least once a month for over five years to learn more and write about the interesting indigenous grapes of Italy. 

So why bother with “international” grapes like Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc, or Merlot grown and made into wine in Italy? Continue reading

Albariño Day 2022: Comparing 2 Rías Baixas with 2 from California

Spain vs California Albariño

As much as I appreciate the freshness and food friendliness of Sauvignon Blanc (and yes more Chilean ones soon!), there are other white grapes that it’s high time for people to discover. Two at the top of my list are Chenin Blanc, like Sauvignon Blanc originating in the Loire Valley of France, and Spain’s Albariño aka Portugal’s Alvarinho, both coming from the Iberian peninsula. While Chenin Blanc was widely planted at one time in California, too often it was made into simple, sweet, insipid wine but there’s plenty of potential. Albariño, however, has always been uncommon in California. Fortunately, as people are discovering the Iberian versions, they are more interested in trying out the Californian ones. And at least one vineyard in California is planning on expanding their vines! Continue reading