The Inside Story from Italian Wine Merchants

Go-To-Wine Tuesday: La Torrazza 2012 Erbaluce di Caulso

Posted on | February 10, 2015 | Written by Emery Long | No Comments

WH1939-2When most wine-lovers think of northern Italy’s Piemonte region, they think of the bold, structured, noble Barolo and Barbarescos that are so coveted and celebrated by their dedicated devotees. But I’d like to suggest something a little different. I’d like to draw some attention to Erbaluce di Caulso, a vibrant grape varietal that has been one of northern Italy’s love affairs for centuries. Although I love the big Nebbiolo reds, I was immediately drawn to this wine as an eccentric white wine diverging from the style and character of the surrounding styles.

When selecting a wine to have for dinner, I often look to regions with regions with similar weather. Weather is the texture of life; it guides the palate to a complement or a contrast, creating a blend of temperature, seasonality, and sense of place. For these reasons, the La Torrazza 2012 Erbaluce di Caulso, from the northern tip of Piemonte, made sense this past week when the winter chill broke.

This Erbaluce shines with a bright, reflective rose gold color that hints at a polished brass. Swirling around my glass, it displays evenly spaced legs running down. Upon first approach, the aromas offered sweet, dew-laden cut grass imbued with ripe nectarine and macerated golden apples. The palate commands a crisp onset cradled by substantial roundness and accented by a gentle minerality, and it’s complemented by bright acidity.

This wine would pair beautifully with seared bay scallops and a simple mushroom risotto. The sweetness of the scallops would intertwine nicely with the glacial freshness of the Erbaluce. The creaminess of the risotto would play to the minerality and acidity of the wine’s finish. But priced at under $20, it’s hard not to want to drink this wine any day or night of the week, even with something as humble as a tuna melt or a simple butter-based pasta dish.

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