- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 19, 2003

Salviano, Orvieto Classico Superiore, 2002, $12

Orvieto, from Umbria, is one of the many Italian white wines being revitalized these days. Only a few years ago, almost all examples tasted thin and simple. Today, the best ones are full of flavor. Crisp, clean and refreshing, they provide a super antidote to Washington’s stifling heat and humidity.

The key to the upsurge in quality in Orvieto is blending. Trebbiano always forms the base, but fairly lax regulations (by Italian standards) allow vintners to include a mix of grapes, including local varieties such as grechetto and drupeggio, as well as international ones such as chardonnay or sauvignon blanc.

Salviano’s Orvieto from the Classico zone includes the minimum amount of trebbiano, a rather neutral tasting grape, and significant amounts of five other varieties, most notably grechetto and sauvignon. Together, these two add grip and racy verve.

Tasting of green melons and apples, with a mineral-tinged undertone and a seductively long finish, this Orvieto will best complement light summer fare such as seafood or cold chicken salad. It’s a wine to reach for as long as the weather stays hot and sticky. (Imported by Vias Imports Ltd.)

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