Pievalta San Paolo Castelli di Jesi Verdicchio Riserva Classico 2016
Verdicchio brilliantly pairs with Fritto Misto, and within the context of local fare, all things seafood are natural go-to pairings. Because of the added textural richness from long lees aging, diverse crudo preparations and seafood-inspired pasta dishes are natural matches.
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A spicy blend of peach skins, papaya, lime and dusty dried flowers rises up from the 2016 Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi Riserva San Paolo. It’s incredibly soft and pliant in feel, with a burst of inner sweetness which is quickly contrasted by sour citrus and bright acidity. There are depths of ripe apple and green melon here, all tinged with saline-minerals, as this tapers off with energy to burn, mouthwatering and literally buzzing with residual tension. There is so much to like about this potent yet high-energy Verdicchio Riserva, and it’s all accomplished through refinement carried out completely in stainless steel.
Verdicchio’s long tradition as the Marche’s banner grape and its reputation as one of Italy’s greatest Italian white varieties is highly respected by the stewards of viniculture at Pievalta. Verdicchio production is centered in two place-name appellations of the Marche region: Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi and Verdicchio di Matelica. Pievalta terroir is located in the former, and the wines of Jesi tell the story of their microclimate and particular subzone. Pievalta’s young history was made possible by the vision of Silvano Brescianini (winemaker and Managing Partner of Barone Pizzini) who tapped enologist Alessandro Fenino to manage this ambitious project in 2002.
Pievalta refrains from conventional winemaking production, and has, since the outset, been farmed organically. In 2005, Alessandro also began conversion to biodynamic farming (Demeter certified since 2008) using legume cover crops between the rows and biodynamic preparations. In philosophy and practice, Pievalta aims to resurrect the spirit of their soils. Since 2009, all wines have been produced free of any animal additives.
Stretching along Italy’s eastern coast with neighbors, Umbria to its west and Abruzzo to its south, Marche is a region with a varying climate from north to south. Its coastal plains roll into hills that become the Apennine Mountains, which run the length of the country. The Marche's best red wines come from the grapes, Montepulciano and Sangiovese; the local Verdicchio makes refreshing, crisp and light whites.
One of central Italy’s classic white grapes, Verdicchio thrives in two distinct zones of the Marche. The best vineyards of Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi adorn hillsides a mere 20 miles from the Adriatic Sea. The vineyards of the smaller, more inland Verdicchio di Matelica, are at higher elevation. Somm Secret—Recent genetic discoveries have proven that the Verdicchio grape is identical to Trebbiano di Soave, Trebbiano di Lugana and Trebbiano Veltenesi.