Falesco Vitiano Rosato 2008
Two of Italy’s most acclaimed winemakers, brothers Riccardo and Renzo Cotarella, founded Falesco in 1979. Their philosophy is focused on balancing the uniqueness and tradition of native varietals with the versatility of international grapes. The result is a complete portfolio of wines that consumers and critics alike have recognized as exhibiting extreme value and Best of Class offerings. Falesco winery is located in Umbria’s Montecchio municipality, near Orvieto in the southwestern area that borders the Lazio region. In Lazio, Falesco also maintains a cellar for the vinification of its DOC Est! Est!! Est!!! di Montefiascone. The region is bordered by the Tyrrhenian Sea on the west and Italy’s mountainous center to the east. The dry, perfectly drained, volcanic terroir offers ideal growing conditions for textured reds and crisp, refreshing whites. The winery’s mission is manifold: to rediscover and promote Italy’s native varietals, to identify terroir areas with the ability to produce high-quality wines, to perform ongoing research and experimentation in winemaking and vineyard management, and to continually improve the quality of all Falesco products. Countless worldwide accolades and the winery’s commercial success attest to the results achieved here.
Named “Oenotria” by the ancient Greeks for its abundance of grapevines, Italy has always had a culture virtually inextricable from wine. Wine grapes grow in every region throughout Italy—a long and narrow boot-shaped peninsula extending into the Mediterranean.
Italian Wine Regions
Naturally, most Italian wine regions enjoy a Mediterranean climate and a notable coastline, if not coastline on all borders, as is the case with the islands of Sicily and Sardinia. The Alps in the northern regions of Valle d'Aosta, Lombardy and Alto Adige create favorable conditions for cool-climate grape varieties. The Apennine Mountains, extending from Liguria in the north to Calabria in the south, affect climate, grape variety and harvest periods throughout. Considering the variable terrain and conditions, it is still safe to say that most high quality viticulture in Italy takes place on picturesque hillsides.
Italian Grape Varieties
Italy boasts more indigenous grape varieties than any other country—between 500 and 800, depending on whom you ask—and most Italian wine production relies upon these native grapes. In some regions, international varieties have worked their way in, but are declining in popularity, especially as younger growers take interest in reviving local varieties. Most important are Sangiovese, reaching its greatest potential in Tuscany, as well as Nebbiolo, the prized grape of Piedmont, producing single varietal, age-worthy Piedmontese wines. Other important varieties include Corvina, Montepulciano, Barbera, Nero d’Avola and of course the white wines, Trebbiano, Verdicchio and Garganega. The list goes on.
Whether it’s playful and fun or savory and serious, most rosé today is not your grandmother’s White Zinfandel, though that category remains strong. Pink wine has recently become quite trendy, and this time around it’s commonly quite dry. Since the pigment in red wines comes from keeping fermenting juice in contact with the grape skins for an extended period, it follows that a pink wine can be made using just a brief period of skin contact—usually just a couple of days. The resulting color depends on grape variety and winemaking style, ranging from pale salmon to deep magenta.