The 2018 Garofoli Serra del Conte Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi Classico typifies the finer Verdicchios of Castelli di Jesi with its crystalline green hue, fresh aromatics, and delicious minerality. No butter, no oak, no tropical fruit flavors to be found in this wine. Verdicchio is the antithesis of big boned buttery California Chardonnay. Instead, enjoy the clean scents of lemon, lime, and a splash of sea spray in this wine along with a refreshingly elegant vitality. The slightly saline minerality on the finish provides charm and grace and left our palates begging for more. For optimal enjoyment, we suggest moderate chilling (38°-40° F) before allowing the wine to slowly shed its frosty shell and reveal its delicacy and abundant charm. Enjoy!
Verdicchio enjoys the reputation as “the quintessential fish wine,” and the 2018 Garofoli Serra del Conte Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi Classico truly fills that bill. Like the finest dry white wines of Italy, Garofoli’s 2018 Serra del Conte Verdicchio is meant to be consumed at table in the company of food, yet it easily doubles as an extraordinary aperitif. Doubling the pleasure requires adding only lightly fried or sautéed calamari served with roasted red peppers, capers, and a mildly spicy aioli; crispy zucchini chips encrusted with Parmesan and parsley and dipped in a homemade dressing; or a Caprese Salad of ripe red and yellow tomatoes with fresh basil and warm, thinly sliced mozzarella. Clams, mussels, oysters, and stuffed mushrooms provide more tasty accompaniments to Garofoli’s Serra del Conte Verdicchio. Fish tacos make fine companions, too, but one need not be beholden solely to the sea. A platter of cured meats and select cow and goat’s milk cheeses pair nicely as well. Buon Appetito!
Editor’s Note: The 2018 Garofoli Serra del Conte Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi Classico is an exclusive offering of The International Wine of the Month Club.
The Garofoli family has been involved in winemaking for five generations, specializing in fashioning traditional red and white wines from Italy’s picturesque Marches. With modern equipment and a profound respect for the Marches’ traditional grape varieties and historic winemaking methods, Garofoli produces an entire line of classic Marchegian wines.
Verdicchio, the Marches’ most renowned grape variety and most sought after wine, dominates Garofoli’s production. Garofoli produces two very distinct Verdicchio wines: a racy, traditional Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi (this month’s feature), and the fuller-bodied, age-worthy Podium Classico Superiore, also from the Castelli di Jesi DOC. Garofoli is recognized as one of the finest of all Verdicchio producers and lauded for its ability to fashion two distinctive Verdicchios, both of which highlight the Marches’ acumen in turning out some of Italy’s tastiest white wines
Garofoli also fashions several delicious red wines, most notably Rosso Conero, as well as a host of additional still and sparkling wines. In order to maintain quality and freshness, Garofoli makes the property’s white and red wines in separate wineries in the Marches.
Verdicchio is a white grape variety indigenous to the Marches region of Italy as well as the name of the Marches’ most popular white wine. Verdicchio is derived from the word verde, which means green, due no doubt to the grape’s greenish-yellow hue. Verdicchio is a commonplace name among wine consumers, and so is the striking but hopelessly impractical fish-shaped bottle that encapsulates the most commercial and usually least exciting of Verdicchio’s wines from the Castelli di Jesi DOC. However, few experts and consumers alike know that there are actually two appellations for Verdicchio in the Marche, Castelli di Jesi and Matelica, and both appellations turn out some of Italy’s most pleasing white wines, mostly from estates such as Garofoli whose wines contain only 100% Verdicchio grapes.
The Marches, or Marche in Italian, is the green, picturesque region of central Italy that lies wedged between the Apennine spine of the Italian peninsula and the cliff studded coast of the gleaming Adriatic Sea. Aside from the two month onslaught (in July and August) of Italian and Teutonic tourists who descend upon the coastal regions of the province, the Marches remains an oasis of calm, rural charm, art, religious shrines, fine food, and of course excellent wines – the very glories of Italy.
The most important wines of this rural oasis, which sits just due east of Tuscany, are Rosso Piceno, the most authentic and traditional of the region’s red wines, made from a blend of Sangiovese and Montepulciano; Rosso Conero, an even more robust version of Rosso Piceno in that the proportion of grape varieties is reversed, whereby the more intense Montepulciano grape plays the main character and Sangiovese the supporting role; and finally Verdicchio, the quintessential fish wine that hails from two distinct DOCs, Castelli di Jesi and Matelica. Although smaller portions of Malvasia and Trebbiano are permitted in both DOC Verdicchios, the finest versions are made from 100% Verdicchio, a wine that ranges from a light pleasant quaff to one of the world’s quintessential white wines. Both Verdicchio DOCs are capable of fashioning compelling white wines that serve as ideal accompaniments to the seafood for which the Marches is renowned.
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