Thursday, January 11, 2024

These Italian Wines Make Any Occasion Special

The new year is underway and the holiday scene has passed by in a blur. But here are three reasons you can enliven any day to a special occasion.

We recently sampled three delightful wines from Italy. They run the gamut from a refreshing white to a Piedmont red to an Asti sparkler.

Riva Leone 2021 Gavi DOCG

The Piedmont region, in the northwest region of Italy, is best known for dynamic reds like Barolo and Barbaresco which are based on the Nebbiolo grape. It also produces a couple of my favorite whites, Gavi and Arneis.

We were pleased to pop open the 2021 Gavi from Riva Leone. Gavi is made from the Cortese grape and is crisp and floral.

It’s a classic wine with racy and fresh flavors with notes of pear and the aroma of pears. We opened it to accompany a light vegan Indian-inspired meal. The price is as refreshing as its taste, $15 SRP.

Riva Leone 2021 Barbera DOC

The reds of the Piedmont region have plentiful acidity which gives the big reds longevity and makes the lighter styles nicely refreshing. I find myself looking for Barbera when I’m tired of big, whomping, Cabernet Sauvignon wines. Its lighter body makes it well-suited for lighter entrees or casual sipping. Bringing out a bottle of Italian Barbera has much more panache than pulling out an uninspiring domestic wine.

For about $12, this Riva Leone Barbera is certainly a value leader. In the glass, it is a deep ruby color. On the nose enjoy whiffs of black cherry and spice. On the palate enjoy dark fruit flavors and accents of spice. There is plenty of rich fruit on the finish.

Acquesi Asti Spumante

We have enjoyed Acquesi on a couple prior occasions. Asti is traditionally a semi-sweet to sweet wine. It’s a fully sparkling wine, unlike Moscato, which is frizzante (lightly sparkling). This is a perfect wine for those who enjoy sweeter wines.

It is a delicate yellow in the glass with a nice perlage. There’s a lovely floral aroma and palate notes of honey, peach, and citrus.

The bottle is beautiful and the wine is suitable for toasting and also would be a great pick to pair with desserts pastries, baked desserts, or desserts with cream. The SRP is $18.

These three wines can help you dispel any dreary winter night and transform it into a special occasion.

Full disclosure: These wines were received as a marketing sample.

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