Great stuff here folks! Passerina is another ancient Italian varietal. It is a thick-skinned, small berry, grown in a very hot region on the northern facing slopes. The climate helps with the acidity while the grape’s natural high sugars carry on the “sweet” stuff. It’s fragrant with really fine flavors of quince, pear, honey suckle and persimmon. It feels viscous on the palate but finishes dry, with a dose of tartness that makes it refreshing and begs for more sipping. A beauty. My suggestion is anything raw…obviously seafood leads the way here but I bet it would be great with a classic tartar or carpaccio. So I will be looking for some local trout cruda on our menu. Considering the viscous and aromatic nature of the wine I will probably try some spicy pasta dishes as well, like our home-made spaghetti with ‘nduja sausage, which carries some heat. If anything else fails in the kitchen, some fried chicken (mild or spicy…pick your poison) will be fabulous with this wine.
Oh, and what about the Sparrow in the title? It turns out that the local sparrows are so nuts about this grape that the Passerina name comes from Passero – Italian for sparrow and ina, a diminutive, most likely relating to the small size of the grape. Fun wine and fun trivia. What’s not to like?
2009 Colli Aprutini IGT Passerina, Barone di Valforte
Alcohol: 12% Alc./Vol.