Pronunciation time! Verdicchio: [Vair-dee-kee-oh] Dei Castelli Di Jesi: [Day kah-stay-lee dee jeh-see] Phew! It’s a tough one! You almost need a glass of wine after saying all that!
So what do we have right here? Well, apart from being a tiny-nightmare to pronounce, Verdicchio is probably most easily compared to Pinot Grigio, only with a little-more body
The name Verdicchio comes to us in part by the Italian word for green (“verde”), due to the greenish-yellow hue of the wine. Bore all your friends to death with that fact, why don’t you!
Winemaker Maurizio Marchetti is an avid painter. With a particular love for the work of Renaissance painter Botticelli (“Don’t we all, darling!”), this particular bottle bears Botticelli’s Venus.
Marchetti is known to be extremely picky about the grapes he chooses to go into his wines. What’s new there, since that’s what EVERY winery in the world claims!?!? That’s very true, but not every winemaker in the world has a cardiologist for a wife! That’s right! Maurizio Marchetti is the brains behind this operation, but since his wife is a heart surgeon, he can afford to be a little-more selective about the grapes he uses. So-much-so, that he sometimes produces as little as a half bottle of wine per vine!
Place (click map for larger view)
The Marches. What can be said about wines from the Marches that hasn’t already been said? Well, since I’m fairly sure this is my first full review of a wine from the Marches, a lot, probably!
There’s a very good chance that if you’re drinking wine from Italy, it comes from either Tuscany, Tre-Venezie (a name used to denote the three regions in the top north-eastern corner) or Piedmont.
Even as a Somm, I very rarely get to experience the wines from Marches. I certainly learned a lot about the region through all the wine books I’ve read, but I have a tendency to forget things if I’m not practicing them! The wines from Marches are just not widely seen on wine lists, mainly because of poor marketing, but also going back to my original point that the wines are just so bloody difficult to pronounce!
The Marches region of Italy apparently sees close to 3,000 hours (that’s almost 200 days) of grape-warming sun each year!
What makes this wine a “Classico” is that it’s produced from a smaller defined area within Marches. This area has the amount of vines planted per acre limited more than “regular” Verdicchio. Anytime you see “Classico” on a bottle of Italian wine, that pretty-much the same story through Italy.
Verdicchio is known to have a naturally high level of acidity and it’s for that reason the grape was actually used to make some of the first Italian sparkling spumante wines, dating back to the middle of the 19th century.
Medium-bodied, but remaining crisp. The fresh cut grass, herbs, floral notes and apricot leads the way, but really only opened up after a little vigorous swirling. The wine is fresh and alive on the palate, with pear, citrus, and wet stone flavors leading into a dry finish.
I would normally suggest drinking it on it’s own, sat next to the pool somewhere; but since we’re right in the middle at winter, and the heating is temporarily out of action in my house, nothing could be further from my mind! I recommend: gnocchi, seafood salad, clams, salmon, sea bass, sushi, light pastas, or pork….and now I’m cold AND hungry!
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