Vermentino is a white wine grape from the island of Sardinia (Sardegna).
The grape continues into the Italian Ligurian Riviera, the famous Cinque Terre, north inland in Piemonte and south along the Tuscan coast. From Lunigiana hills behind Versilia to Bolgheri, and Maremma including the islands Elba and Giglio.
Vermentino is also found along the coast of Southern France, from the Pyrenees to the Cote d' Azur, and the island of Corsica.
Italy stands for about 85% of the world production, and about 10% is produced in France (Provence and Corsica).
The two bigg islands, Sardegna and Corsica, produce the best structured and aromatic Vermentino. Often full bodied, powerful with a persistent taste. A big contrast to the common Vermentino with a medium structure, light and easy to drink.
The main characteristic of Vermentino is its perfume: Mediterranean aromatic herbs such fresh thyme, oregano, mint, lemon balm, rosemary, basil, pines. And its salinity.
Depending on the area of origin, Vermentino can have white floral notes such jasmine or fruity notes such citrus, peach, apple and exotic fruit.
In Sardegna, Vermentino is the main white grape. It has two appellations:
Thanks to the hot and favourable climate, Vermentino wines from Sardegna are often richer with a fuller body than Ligurian Vermentino.
The wines from Sardegna pairs beautifully with the local fish and seafood.
In Liguria, Vermentino is the main grape variety. And there are a few DOCs:
Colli di Luni DOC (Hills of the Moon) is known for its freshness and minerality. The proximity of the Massa and Carrara marble mountains surely helps. The DOC is located on the border between Liguria and Tuscany, with the majority of the vineyards in Liguria.
The Ligurian Vermentino has a medium structure and is normally a little lighter than the wines from Sardegna (Sardinia).
Along the coast, Vermentino vines are found in the amazing cliffside vineyards of Cinque Terre. And hiking the Cinque Terre, through terraced vineyards, and the view of its dramatic coastline is unforgettable.
The Cinque Terre DOC is a white wine made of local grapes such Bosco (min.40%), Albarola and Vermentino (max.40%)
Portofino DOC is located near Genova in the Tigullio Gulf and the main white grapes are Vermentino, Bianchetta Genovese and Scimiscià.
In Toscana, the climate is warmer than in Liguria, and the vineyards produce a richer Vermentino.
Winemaking techniques like skin and lees contact, together with barrel aging create a richer body with more complexity. Vermentino wines from Bolgheri (Bolgheri Vermentino DOC) is often compared with French Viognier.
Tuscan Vermentino has well defined aromas and a characteristic saline taste, a perfect match to Grilled Fish, Baked Seabass and Turbot or "Orata all'Acquapazza" (Sea Bream poached with fresh cherry tomatoes).
In Piemonte, Favorita is a biotype of Vermentino. It grows primarily in the areas around the city of Alba, in the Roero zone, and the Alta Valle Belbo area.
Favorita wines are known for good acidity and intense Pear notes.
In France, Vermentino is called Rolle and it is often blended.
Alcohol can be addictive. Drink in moderation.
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