From: Piedmont, Italy
Diano d'Alba is a municipality that is known predominantly for classy, sleek Dolcetto under the DOCG name of Dolcetto di Diano d'Alba DOCG. Under this DOCG, Dolcetto reigns supreme, and thus, Chardonnay isn't allowed within the appellation itself, hence the "Langhe Bianco" designation instead.
Why this works. As a site, Diano d'Alba lies between both Barolo and Barbaresco, and has a general mix of the two soils the previously named areas are known for: Serravallian and Tortonian. In this area especially (Diano d'Alba), the sub soils are rich in sand, which lend to friendlier aromas in the glass. The calcareous marls and layers of sandy marl and sandstone are similar to the soils (also high in calcium carbonate) found in say, Burgundy. These soils lend to specific reasons for grape/wine quality, and they are: better water retention/drainage, higher acids at harvest, vine development and disease resistance. I'm not comparing the two by any means, but given the climate and Chardonnay's chameleon-like abilities, you can easily see how this combination can work even in a red wine DOCG.
Tasting Notes: All this to say, that if you like wines like Chablis, you're in for a treat and this is a must-try for you. A racy backbone meets lemony confit with a hint of sea salt and a burst of yellow fruits like ripe apple and barely ripe pineapple on the palate. There's a bit of a refreshing bitterness on the finish, in the way a good pie crust tastes, with a hint of nutmeg.
Pairing: with the usual suspects. Poultry, seafood, and of course, risotto and mushrooms. Can't go wrong. And at this price, you should definitely take full advantage while we've got it.
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