Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Best day trip outside of Rome visiting the wineries of Lazio

Andiamo a Roma!  Yesterday you may have caught my podcast with Rick Zullo discussing an introduction to Italian wines including the Lazio wine region.   If you have been to Italy, most likely you have visited Rome, the capital of Italy in the central region of Lazio along the Tyrrhenian Sea. As we all know, Rome is rich in history, art, architecture, and much more, but let's escape today from the city and chaos and journey to wine country outside of Rome. Here are some of the best areas to visit outside of Rome for a day trip to experience the wines of Lazio.
Colosseum in Rome
You may not immediately gravitate to the Lazio region when it comes to wine. Lazio is known for producing easy drinking, simple table wines, without drawing much excitement, but there are some top whites and reds that you can find that are worth experiencing. Plus, any time you visit a wine region you learn so much about the cultural history of an area, plus the climate, terrain, and much more.

If you are a lover of whites you will be able to appreciate this region. My first suggestion, that is near to Rome, is to venture out to the Castelli Romani area to see the production of frascati, the primary white wine. There are a number of towns in this area in the Alban hillsColli Albani, which is about 12 miles south of Rome. Wine lovers have enjoyed Frascati for over 3,000 years in this region. What makes the winemaking of this region unique is the volcanic soil. Volcanic soil imparts lots of character to wine that is grown on it, especially minerality and complexity. Frascati wine is a blend of the malvasia bianca, trebbiano and bombino bianco grapes. Check out the Frascati Superiore DOCG wines as well as the Cannellino di Frascati DOCG, which is a dessert wine.
Castelli Romani Alban Hills
The Alban Hills of Frascati by CucombreLibre
If you're a red wine lover, the best wine area outside of Rome to visit would be the town of Piglio, about 30 miles southeast of Rome in the Frosinone province. The primary red grape of Lazio is the unique cesanese del Piglio made with 90% of the cesanese grape. Cesanese is an aromatic red grape producing wines with spice, ina concentration that shows the ability to age. Outside of the cesanese grape, most of what you'll find in this region for red wines are your typical international varieties like cabernet sauvignon and merlot.

Don't get me wrong, no one should miss visiting Rome for its history alone, but take a day off and enrich your experience with a visit to the wine region. It might be overwhelming with the number of choices available to stay in Rome, but if you are looking to base yourself out of Rome for your vacation and excursions, consider Worldhotel Ripa Roma in the Trastevere district of Rome.

For a gastronomic Lazio experience, check out my blog with a food and wine pairing of Lazio featuring saltimbocca alla romana with Casale del Giglio petit verdot, and get a sample of what this region has to offer from a culinary perspective.
chicken saltimbocca alla romana with Casale del Giglio
This article is associated with #Hipmunkcitylove.