Saturday, July 1, 2017

Italian Red Wines to Enjoy in the Summer

Our Italian Food, Wine & Travel group this month is featuring Italian summer red and white wines. I'd say most folks gravitate towards whites, but I want to share with you some Italian red wines that you can enjoy even in the hot, summer days. 


Of course we'd all love to be sitting in a piazza, watching the locals take their evening passagiata while sipping many of Italy's fine wines, but for those of us that can only dream of it right now can still be left with some suggestions to pick up a bottle, close one's eyes and only dream.

Italy has a never ending list when it comes to native varietals to select from, but here are just some of my suggestions on some Italian reds to enjoy this summer. One of the key points to remember when drinking these suggested red wines below is to make sure they have a slight chill to them. 
Italian red wines for summer
My recent trip to Peschiera del Garda.  Let's all dream of sipping with this view!

Lambrusco

Home to Emilia-Romagna in north central Italy, this wine is well beyond what many remember as the inexpensive, sweet wine clouding many images in folks minds. Lambrusco comes in many different styles and is best known as being dry, slightly frizzante full of red fruits. You can read more about the different styles of Lambruso on a previous blog. Start your meal with it alongside some salumi or enjoy it on it's own. 
Styles of Lambrusco
Copyright of Consorzio Tutela DelLambrusco di Modena
Schiava

Located in the region of Trentino-Alto Adige in northeastern Italy, but more specifically in the Alto Adige. It's also known as vernatsch. This wine is delicate and light bodied as well as light in color. It's full or aromatics and fruity, red berries with slight spice.

Dolcetto

Another grape from northern Italy found in the Piedmont region of northwestern Italy. Known as “little sweet one”, this is purple hued in color with juicy red fruits of cherry and raspberries with some spice and low in tannin. It is typically light in body, but there are definitely more modern style dolcetto out there that are heartier reds as well. 


Frappato

This wine can be found in eastern Sicily. It's used mostly in the Cersasuolo di Vittoria wines, the only DOCG of Italy, where it's blended with nero d'avola. Enjoying this wine on it's own though will leave you satisfied in the summer months as it is light-bodied, aromatic, full of strawberries and bright acidity. 


Don't forget about any of the wonderful rose' wines of Italy, known as roasto. Depending on your palate and preference the rose' wines of the south, due to the climate, typically tend to have more body and riper fruits where those of the north are more delicate, lighter and crisp. Either way you can't wrong so choose depending on your mood or what you're pairing it with. On my recent trip to Italy last month I tried a new rosato release from the Pasqua Winery 11 Minutes. It's a blend of corvina primarily with syrah, carmenere and trebbiano di lugana. It received it's name from it's 11 minutes of skin contact with the juice. Light salmon in color, it's a very soft, delicate and elegant rose' with nice acid and notes of strawberry. A perfect wine for beginning our evening recently in Piazza Dante in Verona.
2016 Pasqua 11 Minutes rosato

Join my fellow wine bloggers as they share more Italian wines for you to indulge in this summer. Also, join us live on Twitter this Saturday July 1st at 11am EST at #ItalianFWT.  See you then!