Please The Palate Wine of the Week: Giornata 2022 Vermentino, Paso Robles

When I talk to California winemakers, I regularly hear them talk about Vermentino as the grape everyone should be planting. Vermentino, Vermentino, Vermentino. Why? Because Vermentino is a grape that likes heat and can therefore successfully be grown in many places, especially with climate change. Vermentino can be both oaked and unoaked. Vermentino can produce a rich, full-bodied wine or a crisp, mineral-driven wine. It can be blended with other grapes or made as a single varietal wine. These are the reasons why many California winemakers like Vermentino, although there are only 100 acres planted in California. In Paso Robles, Giornata produces Vermentino and this week the Giornata 2022 Vermentino, Paso Robles is the Please The Palate wine of the week.

Please The Palate Wine of the Week: Giornata 2022 Vermentino, Paso Robles

About Vermentino

Vermentino, a light-skinned white grape, is primarily found in Italy. It is widely planted in Sardinia, Tuscany, and Liguria (where it is called Pigato), as well as in Corsica and in Piemonte (where it is called Favorita). It is grown in the south of France (where it is called Rolle). And it is grown in California, Oregon, and even Idaho. Vermentino is similar in body and taste profile to Sauvignon Blanc, Albariño, Grüner Veltliner, Sémillon, and Soave.

About Giornata

Giornata is owned by Stephy and Brian Terrizzi. They met as students while studying viticulture and enology at Fresno State. Brian had lived in Italy before returning to school and together, they traveled to Italy. Stephy and Brian planned to move to Italy and make wine but Stephy found herself pregnant with twins so they stayed in California and found their way to Paso Robles. Stephy and Brian stumbled upon Vermentino at a winemaker get-together. Local Paso winery Wild Horse Winery had a 1/3 acre of Vermentino and a 1/3 acre of Friulano. Cuttings of these grapes had been shipped from France to Tablas Creek. Kenneth Volk, who started Wild Horse Winery in 1981 and ran it for more than two decades, took some of the cuttings and planted the own-rooted vines in his vineyard.  Stephy and Brian took cuttings of the Vermentino to plant in their own vineyard. But sadly, most of the plantings had red blotch on them and had to be pulled up. It was given to UC Davis and USDA to run tissue tests and clean up the red blotch.

Please The Palate Wine of the Week: Giornata 2022 Vermentino, Paso Robles

Tasting Note

For the 2022 Vermentino, the grapes are sourced from two custom plantings, one in San Miguel which has heavier clay soils and is organic and another planted near their house in Paso Robles. A third vineyard source grows Vermentino on sandy soils. The grapes were destemmed and crushed and left on their skins for a few hours before pressing. The juice was then put in stainless steel tanks where it underwent native fermentation, including partial malolactic fermentation. The wine was then filtered and bottled with minimal SO2. 2022 was a warmer vintage. The wine has aromas of pineapple, grapefruit, and pear, as well as herbal notes. On the palate, the wine has an oily texture with soft but intense acidity.

Please The Palate Wine of the Week: Giornata 2022 Vermentino, Paso Robles

Food Pairing

With just a touch of residual sugar that adds a richness to the wine, it can easily pair with dishes ranging from pesto dishes and fish dishes to butter chicken or a non-spicy curry.

Where to purchase

The 2022 Giornata Vermentino retails for $30 and it can be purchased directly from the winery at

Meet the winemaker

Listen to the interview I did with Stephy Terrizzi on the Wine Soundtrack USA podcast.