HER BOOKS ON AMAZON
  • Wine and Climate Change: Winemaking in a New World
    Wine and Climate Change: Winemaking in a New World
    by L. J. Johnson-Bell
  • Pairing Wine and Food: A Handbook for All Cuisines
    Pairing Wine and Food: A Handbook for All Cuisines
    by Linda Johnson-Bell
  • Home Cellar Guide Hb
    Home Cellar Guide Hb
    by Linda Johnson-Bell
  • Quel vin pour quel plat ?
    Quel vin pour quel plat ?
    by Linda Johnson-Bell
  • Great Wine Tours of the World
    Great Wine Tours of the World
    Barnes and Noble Books
  • The Wine Collector's Handbook
    The Wine Collector's Handbook
    by Linda Johnson
  • De juiste wijn bij het juiste gerecht
    De juiste wijn bij het juiste gerecht
    by Johnson-Bell Linda

  • Good Food, Fine Wine: A Practical Guide to Finding the Perfect Match
    Good Food, Fine Wine: A Practical Guide to Finding the Perfect Match
    by LINDA JOHNSON-BELL

ARTICLE INDEX
SEARCH FOR A WINE
Monday
Mar042013

Arneis: Piedmont's great white

Deep in the Piedmont region, where red grapes are the tradition, the Arneis grape is a difficult rebel, growing where it shouldn’t and tasting like no other white… 

In fact, in the local dialect, “Arneis” means rascal, due to its unreliability. Yet, it somehow has stubbornly dug its roots into the unsuitable sandy soils in Roero, between the towns of Bra and Alba, and produces one of the most original and singular taste sensations. There are several styles being produced, but a well-made Arneis will share the common denominators of a well-structured and complex yet mysteriously uncomplicated body, refreshing acidity, and a long, solid finish. Always drunk very young, its an aromatic rainbow of white blossoms, camomile, apricots, pears, the pulpy white flesh of a green apple, ripe damson, dried herbs, warm hay, an unidentifiable touch of savoury, and its very distinctive perfume of almonds. It does wonders for many cheeses, pasta dishes and, believe it or not, is the absolute perfect match for asparagus.

The Piedmont producers are a bit divided in opinion about Arneis. It suffers from the hangover of a previous bad reputation…from, as usual the 1970’s and the days of sweet bulk wines. Then, the grape was not taken very seriously and was nearly abandoned, until some of the producers figured out that they would need some good whites to counterbalance their predominant red production. Don’t forget, Piedmont is the land of Barbera, Barolo, Barbaresco, Dolcetto: the Italian red icons. A white wine from here has to be rather special to hold its own. Arneis certainly manages this beautifully. 

 

TWO TO TRY


Bruno Giacosa Roero Arneis 2009, Fine and Rare Wines, www.frw.co.uk

Signore Giocosa is the premier producer of Arneis. Unmissable. His Arneis is always delicious, distinctive and unique.

 

Malvirà Roero Arneis 2008, Waitrose Wine Direct, www.waitrosewine.com

Arneis in the classic style, by the Damonte brothers: meadow flowers, hay, fruit, almonds, all presented on a crisp, minerally palate.

 

Andy Muscat at New Generation Wines also has a good one ... call him.

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

« TOP FIVE Sicilian Nero d’Avola | Main | The Nero di Troia from Apulia »

References (1)

References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>