Ribolla Gialla, 2020. Zorzettig

Ribolla Gialla, 2020. Zorzettig

Item #: U0522W1
Vintage: 2020
Varietal: Ribolla Gialla
Vineyard/Appellation: DOC Friuli Colli Orientali, Italy
Color: Very Pale Straw
Nose: Flowers & Fruit
Palate: Honeysuckle, Guava
Finish: Citrus Edge
Rating: 98
Cellaring/Serving Suggestions: Now thru 2023/Seafood, Vegetarian/12.5% Alcohol by Volume

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Zorzettig is the family which founded the winery over 100 years ago. It is now one of the few wineries in Italy run by a woman, Annalisa Zorettig. Their 250 acres makes them one of the larger estates in the Colli Orientali del Fruili. This area is considered one of the greatest in the world for white wines. Vineyards have flourished here since the Roman Empire.

There is something magical about Fruilian whites. There is a clean freshness to them and they exhibit their varietal correctness with pinpoint accuracy. Add to that organic farming and you have a match this is unmatched.

However, the star here is the grape, Ribolla Gialla. Its earliest mention dates back to 1296 and has been revered ever since. Friuli is famous for Ribolla as is Slovenia, which is next door. It is one of the few white grapes that is fermented on the skins. Most are not, because the skin contributes tannins which can obfuscate the fruit of the grape.

Since Ribolla has fruit and flavor to spare, fermenting on the skins gives it body and structure that could be compared to a red wine. That comparison is interrupted by its sensual fruit and floral qualities.

It is not an easy grape to grow and for that reason, it has few plantings outside of Fruili. To producers like Zorzettig, it is sacrosanct. From the fresh cut flowers to the tropical fruit basket of aromas and flavors it pleases at every turn. A pasta simply adorned with black pepper and Pecorino Romano would be a heavenly match.