The Brigaldara winery in Italy’s northeastern Veneto region is best known for its reds, ranging from its consistently excellent and versatile $15 Valpolicella (reviewed here) to its single-vineyard Amarones.
Of the nine wines featured on Brigaldara’s website, there is just one white wine — and it is well worth getting to know. The 2021 Soave, at around $16, is as satisfying and interesting as the Valpolicella, and the two serve as a great introduction to the region with a go-to Italian wine combo for everyday drinking.
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Your parents are probably familiar with Valpolicella and Soave as mainstays of Italian-American restaurants of the red-and-white-tablecloth variety, featuring rather generic wines from a couple of mega-producers that shall remain nameless.
Brigaldara’s wines are a real cut above. The Soave is made from the signature Garganega variety, which is fermented and aged in stainless steel without exposure to oak. Aromas and tastes of pear, apricot, almond, and a touch of lemon are accented by herb and mineral notes, and there’s a nice creamy long finish. The wine is soft yet refreshing and effortless to drink.
It’s excellent on its own and is a highly versatile food wine for all kinds of appetizers, herb-roasted chicken thighs or breasts, and sautéed broiled flounder or sole filets.
The Brigaldara winery was established almost a century ago and farms 116 acres of vines. It describes its wines as having “a clean, rigorous style, focused on drinkability and on the preservation of the aromatic profiles of the grapes.”
It’s an apt description for both the Soave and the Valpolicella, which are two of the better values you’ll find among Italian wines in general.