Tired of the same old glass of Sauvignon Blanc at the end of the day? While we do hold this classic varietal dear to our hearts (hello, Sancerre!), there is a plethora of white varietals in the world to explore.
When looking for a new white wine to try, Italy is a great place to start. Did you know that Italy has over 2,000 grape varietals planted throughout the country? That’s a whole lot of wine to discover. We’ll make it simple for you: Start with a varietal that’s super popular among the locals, one that makes crisp, refreshing wines suitable for any situation. One of those is the Verdicchio grape.
Don’t be intimidated by the name! Verdicchio (pronounced ver-dee-kee-oh) is a popular grape variety in the central Italian region of Marche. The name comes from the Italian word for green — verde — because of the greenish-yellow hues of the grape.
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The grape has been grown for the last six centuries and produces dry, refreshing white wines with citrus and almond notes. Verdicchio can also be used to produce some stellar sparkling wines due to the naturally high acidity in the grape. The grape also produces a lovely variety of dessert wine called straw wine, where the grapes are laid out on straw mats to dry, concentrating their sugars; think ice wine but for warmer climates. Verdicchio is also thought to be related to Trebbiano and Greco, two other native Italian varietals.
Verdicchio needs to be on your radar for a variety of reasons. First and foremost, it’s straight-up delicious. The crisp, clean flavor profile makes it the perfect aperitif wine, excellent for warm-weather sipping on the patio. At the same time, the mouthwatering acidity and clean citrus flavors make it a great wine to pair with a variety of foods.
We recommend pairing the wine with a fresh vegetable and hummus spread during happy hour. And for dinner? Light, poultry-based dishes and lemon cod are heavenly with this citrusy varietal. Best of all, Verdicchio is super affordable and relatively easy to find.
Next time you reach for that go-to bottle of white, switch it up with a Verdicchio from Marche. You won’t be disappointed!