Friday, June 24, 2022

Happy International Rosé Day with Perlino Prosecco Rosato DOC

On the fourth Friday of June annually is International Rosé Day to celebrate rosé from all around the world. Around a year ago at this time I wrote a piece about the newer Prosecco Rosato DOC wines to hit the market with the 2019 vintage for the Rosautoctono movement. I’ve recently had an opportunity to sample some more and it makes me wonder what took so long for these wines to become a thing. With as much Prosecco that is in in demand on the market and with the growing interest for rosé wines, rosé based Prosecco seems like a no brainer to me.  

Prosecco under the Prosecco DOC designation could never be produced in a pink, or rosato, style at least branded under the Prosecco DOC rules and regulations. The idea was broached in 2019, 10 years after the original Prosecco DOC was founded, and on August 11, 2020 the Prosecco DOC Rosato Millesimato was established with the newest wines hitting the market that in October in 2020. 

The wines produced under the Prosecco DOC designation come from 4 provinces in the Friuli Venezia Giulia region, or FVG, including Trieste, Udine, Gorizia and Pordenone. They also are grown within 5 provinces in the Veneto region including Venice, Treviso, Belluno, Padua and Vicenza.  

As with all designations come the laws that a winery must follow in order to be bottled and carry the designation on the label. With the Prosecco DOC Rosato wines they must be made of at least 85-90% Glera and 10-15% Pinot Noir/Pinot Nero. In order to carry the Millesimato on the label, which represents the actual vintage that the wine was produced from, the wine has to have used 85% of the grapes from that particular vintage.


As with all Prosecco these wines are produced with a secondary natural fermentation called the Martinotti or Charmat method. The wine must undergo this fermentation for a minimum of 60 days.  

2020 Perlino Prosecco Rosato DOC Millesimato

Last night I sampled the 2020 Perlino Prosecco Rosato DOC Millesimato Extra Dry. This wine is made of 90% Glera with 10% Pinot Nero. I’m including the sugar levels found in Prosecco sourced from the Prosecco DOC Consorzio. Extra Dry may not be what you think as it actually has higher level between 12-17 grams of sugar per liter. This wine was pale salmon in color. When I poured the wine in the glass I felt like I was standing in a strawberry patch. It was refreshing on the palette with juicy strawberry notes and mouthwatering acidity. A perfect end to the day! ABV 11% 

Dry and sweetness levels in Prosecco

Have you tried to Prosecco Rosato DOC and what are your thoughts? 

*This wine was provided as a sample, but opinions are always my own.

Friday, June 10, 2022

National Prosecco Week Kicks off with Fratelli Cosmo Col Fondo Prosecco

 Tomorrow is the start of National Prosecco week and I always have something in stash to share with you all. Today I’m sharing a bottle of the non-vintage Fratelli Cosmo Cosi E Col Fondo Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco DOCG. There is your average mass market Prosecco and then there are those deemed of higher quality from some of the respected appellations like those from Conegliano Valdobbiadene and Asolo.  

This Fratelli Cosmo Prosecco is one of the products of the Bellenda winery I’ve covered before. I couldn’t locate exactly what the association is with Fratelli Cosmo and why the wine is named that. What I thought would be interesting to share about this wine is the Col Fondo part of the name listed on the bottle and exactly what that means. 

What is Col Fondo? 

Here is where your Italian will come in handy if you have some knowledge of Italian grammar. The Italian preposition con, meaning with, and the definite article il, meaning the, are combined to form the word “col”. Fondo translates to bottom, so col fondo equates to “with the bottom”. What does this mean for the wine? Well, there are different methods in which Prosecco can be produced including the most common being the Martinotti or Charmat method that we’ve discussed before. Col Fondo differs from the other Prosecco producing methods because it goes through a secondary fermentation where it doesn’t go through disgorgement. The sediment, or lees, are not removed from the bottle and are left to stay in the bottle or “on the bottom” as the name refers.  

You will find Col Fondo only in the production of Prosecco and not all bottles will have it on the label. You may see “rifermentato in bottiglia” that it was refermented in the bottle. Since this is a more natural way to produce Prosecco without the wine being filtered the wine may look cloudy in the glass. They are produced in a frizzante style that have less bubbles than others and will tend to be drier. They also may tend to taste sour or bitter, but not in a negative fashion as you may assume. 

The Wine 

The Bellenda Fratelli Cosmo NV Cosi E Col Fondo Conegliano Valdobbiadene DOCG is grown on south and southwest facing slopes on limestone and clay soils with remains of ancient glaciers. The wine was cloudy as expected with a tinge of yellow-greenish color. A soft nose of apples and white peach. Very dry with rather delicate bubbles with notes of apple and lime. Great acidity with minerality showing throughout. ABV 11% SRP $16-20 

Bellenda Fratelli Cosmo NV Cosi E Col Fondo Conegliano Valdobbiadene DOCG

The Pairing 

I’ve been increasing my seafood and white meat in my diet over red meat and have for a long time wanted to prepare fish cakes. After tasting this wine this week I knew it was time to try them out. This wine seems like it gravitates well to seafood so it seemed like a natural pairing. Although wine is always hard to pair with asparagus I focused on tasting it with the fish cakes instead and it was quite the delight! 

Fish cakes with Prosecco

Check out some of my older postings on some of the Prosecco appellations of northern Italy. 

*This wine was provided as a sample, but opinions are always my own.

Friday, June 3, 2022

The Indigenous Whites of Campania with La Capranera Falanghina

When it comes to indigenous white grapes of Italy there is such a large variety to chooe from.  This month our Italian Food, Wine and Travel group (#ItalianFWT) hosted by Marcia at Joy of Wine selected the theme of indigenous white grapes from all over Italy.  I’ve had a bottle of Falanghina from the Campania region that I haven’t tried yet that I’ll be sharing today.  I love this region for both their whites and reds and don’t try them enough.  Let’s dig in! 

The Region ~ Campania 

The Campania wine region is located in southern Italy on the western border of the Tryyhenian Sea, which has a large influence on the wines of this region.  The wine I’m sharing today comes from the San Salvatore estate founded in 1988 by Giuseppe Pagano with the famous Riccardo Cotarella as his winemaker.  He grows indigenous grapes of Campania including Falanghina, Fiano and Aglianico on his 55 acres of vineyards.  The larger population of his 270+ acre estate is covered by forests with some arable farmland and olive groves. 

Campania region map
The Campania Region ~ Copyright of Wikipedia

La Capranera is a project that he started that produces young wines that are certified organic following biodynamic methods that are modern and easy to drink at affordable pricing.  The name “La Capranera” means “black goats” and stems comes from the indigenous goats the area called cilentana nera.  These goats graze in the nearby Cilento National Park outside of where the grapes are grown in the Capaccio-Paestum area.  These goats at one point faced extinction and are now are a growing population along with the Falanghina grape that once fell to the wasteside and is steadily being revived. 

cilentana nera goats of Campania
Cilentana Nera goats ~ Copyright of Pasquale D'Ancicco
The Grape ~ Falanghina 

Falanghina, pronounced “fah-lan-ghee-nah", is an ancient grape believed to be of Greek origin.  It’s primarily to be found in the Campania region and may be seen in small amounts in the regions of Puglia and Abruzzo.  It loves the volcanic soils of Campania placed from Mt. Vesuvius.  These grapes are yellow in color and are covered in a thin, waxy coating.  They’re typically are lively with acidity and floral aromatics with flavors of citrus, apple and pear with possible spicy and mineral notes along with pine aromas.  The wines may be labeled as Falanghina, but could be possibly be made from a combination of two genetically distinct grapes, Falanghina Beneventana and Falanghina Flegrea.  The only way to really know this is by doing your research after purchasing, but either way you’ll still be able to experience what this wonderful grape is all about. 

The Wine 

I wasn’t able to locate any technical specs on this particular vintage.  The winery only had their 2016 on their site so I don’t have those specifics to share.  The 2018 La Capranera Falanghina was straw colored with lots going on in the nose. Aromas of pears, green apple, lemon and a hint of peach. Mouthwatering acidity greeted me up front and carried right through to the lingering finish. Pineapple notes along with some lemon pith and salinity played on the palate. ABV 12.5% SRP $15  

2018 La Capranera Falanghina

This week was hectic with the holiday so I prepared some shredded chicken in the crockpot with carrots and peas with a side of asparagus. To please the husband and the kids I topped it with a roux sauce. It basically tasted like chicken pot pie without the pie. It went pleasantly well with the Falanghina. Not a Campanian dish, but sometimes you have to work with what you got and life is still good.  

chicken pairing with Falanghina
What are your favorite white native grapes of Italy that you enjoy?

Join the rest of our Italian food and wine loving friends as they share other indigenous Italian whites with some suggested pairings. Join us live this Saturday on Twitter at #ItalianFWT @ 11am EST. Ci vediamo! 

Importer: Banville Wine Merchants