24 Jan Please The Palate Wine of the Week: Collavini 2021 Pucino Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso, Friuli Venezia Giulia
Italy is home to numerous indigenous grapes, many of which are in the same families. For example, you may have heard of Trebbiano but in fact there are at least six varieties of Trebbiano. It is the same with Refosco. Refosco is a family of six distinct dark-skinned grape varieties native to Italy’s Friuli-Venezia Giulia, western Slovenia, and the Istrian Peninsula of Croatia. The star of the family is Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso. It is a big name for a meaty wine that is typically full of tannins and savory. But the Collavini 2021 Pucino Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso, Friuli Venezia Giulia is the opposite and it was so enjoyable that it is the Please The Palate wine of the week.
Located in Friuli, Collavini is in a small village on the border between Italy and Slovenia. Collavini was created in 1896 by Eugenio Collavini. The winery passed to his son Giovanni who passed it to his son Manlio. Manlio modernized the company and moved the headquarters to the hills of Corno di Rosazzo. Manlio was one of the first people to vinify Pinot Grigio white (the skins are pink) and he created the first sparkling Pinot Grigio in 1971, and later introduced the idea of sparkling Ribolla Gialla. Today his sons Luigi and Giovanni run the family business with him.
About Refosco dal Pedunculo Rosso
Friuli is a region known for white wines, such as Friulano, Pinot Grigio, Ribolla Gialla, as well as Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. But red wines are also made in Friuli using indigenous red grapes which include Pignolo, Schiopettino, and Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso.
Peduncolo, or peduncle, means “stem”. The name Refosco dal Pedunculo Rosso comes from the fact that the grape has a red stem. So, it is the “Refosco with the red stem,” although it sounds a bit more romantic when said in Italian.
Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso is dark and densely colored. It produces wines that are high in acidity with notes of dark fruit and peppery spices. It is a late ripener, and if harvested too early, it can produce harsh, unripe tannins.
The Collavini Pucino Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso is made in a lighter style, similar to how it was made during Roman times. Pucino is the name of the red wine grown in Friuli during the Roman times. It was grown by the sea. As Collavini makes a lighter style wine that recalls the Pucino wine, they wanted to call it Pucino.
The grapes were partially de-stemmed, cold-macerated, and partially carbonic. Fermentation took place in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks, followed by maturation and aging continued in tank. The wine is bottled in the spring. Looking at the dark-colored wine, you might think it will be a big wine. But at only 12.5% alcohol, the wine expresses the freshness and purity of the grape. On the nose, the wine has inviting aromas of wild berries, raspberries, and licorice. On the palate, the wine is smooth with soft tannins and a lovely herbaceous finish.
I loved the freshness of the Pucino Refosco which is a little more in the style of Beaujolais. This freshness, along with being medium-bodied, makes this wine very versatile to enjoy with food, ranging from fish to meat.
Where To Purchase
The Eugenio Collavini Pucino Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso Colli Orientali del Friuli retails for $20.