Italy’s Abruzzo can be found in the center of the country, surrounded on all sides by better-known regions (or the Adriatic Sea). While it’s known for its namesake bottling Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, other wines are common to this region, including the rose Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo and iconic whites Trebbiano d’Abruzzo and Pecorino.
Today we look at a pair of Abruzzo wines, one white and one red.
2020 Le Vigne di Faraone Trebbiano d’Abruzzo – Bright yellow in color, one’s mind immediately expects an oak bomb when tucking into this wine — only to reveal a surprisingly delicate, approachable bottling that speaks of lemon curd, fresh-cut grass, and some coconut husk. Fruity and moderate in body, touches of saline and crisp acidity on the finish serve to further perk up what emerges as a delightfully balanced and versatile wine. A- / $18
2019 Giuseppe Savini Rondineto Montepulciano d’Abruzzo DOC – Whipped with licorice, the anise on the nose of this wine is hard not to miss — and it’s hard not to enjoy. Gentle layers of menthol, green herbs, give the wine some direction beyond its blunt beginnings, but there’s otherwise quite a bit of tannin here to navigate, leading to a finish that today is a bit leathery and touched with tar. I’m not sure there’s enough underlying body to support cellaring this for more than a year or two to help round things out, but it’s worth a shot. B / $15