This months Wine Blogging Wednesday (WBW) topic of a white wine from Friuli – Venezia Giulia (Friuli for short) came to us from Jack and Joanne over at Fork and Bottle. Friuli is typically known for its white wines such as Pinot Bianco, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and most notably the native grape of Tocai Friuliano. So after doing some reading (both in the Wine Blogging book clubs selection Vino Italiano as well as the Wine Bible and Oxford Companion to Wine) I figured that the best expression for the region to give my first taste of Friuli would be a Tocai Friuliano. The region of Friuli is located in the extreme Northeast part of the country. Friuli is bordered by neighboring countries of Austria and Slovenia and as natural has taken some its winemaking cues from these areas.
Jack and Joanne warned us to try and purchase a Friuli wine greater than or equal to $18 so that we would get a true representation of the area, which I quickly forgot when I was at our local wine shop, The Wine Cellar. What I decided on was actually the only Tocai Friuliano that the shop had and was 1 of only 2 that I saw in the shop, the 2006 Toh! from di Lenardo.
The di Lenardo property is located smack in the middle of the Friuli (Friuli Grave DOC) region in an area called Ontagnano totaling approximately 150 hectares, 40 of which are under vine. The winery produced 50,000 cases in 2007, around 70% of which come to the United States. The wines of di Lenardo under the care of winemaker Massimo di Lenardo are hand picked from the vines and experience the best technology the wine industry has to offer. Even though the top technology is used during the wine making process, a minimalists approach is used in order to yield the true expression of the wines they produce.
My Tasting Notes
Nose – The nose was a little faint but had some good aromas once I could pick them out – Pear, lychee, plantain, flour
Taste – Eucalyptus, honey, lemon, a bit herbal/grassy
Mouthfeel – fairly light to medium body, had a slightly viscous feel but it could have just been that the wine was pretty soft but I wouldn’t say flabby at all
Finish – Surprisingly long finish, longer than expected
The wine was pretty good although I wouldn’t say great, but definitely good enough to give Friuli and Tocai Friuliano another try. This wine tasted and smelled like a 50/50 blend of Viognier and Pinot Gris, which was nice, but there was just something that was a little off for me. We had the Toh! with homemade Indian Food and was a pretty nice pairing with the more tropical fruit aroma and the softer mouthfeel was nice with the slightly spicy meal.
Thanks Jack and Joanne for the introduction to this region and the wine it has to offer.
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