- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Masi, “Masianco,” IGT Delle Venezie, 2004, $14

A blend of pinot grigio (75 percent) and an indigenous northern Italian grape named verduzzo (25 percent), this pale white wine is a delicious aperitif choice, as well as a fine companion for light fare. Fresh and lively, it’s just the thing to sip on the patio or deck on a warm evening.

Masianco offers a richer texture and fuller body than most Italian pinot grigios, but it maintains a crisp character, with autumnal apple and pear flavors, and a whiff of minerality. The verduzzo grapes, which are harvested a month after the pinot grigio, provide the attractive structure. The wine feels silky rather than shrill, and so is a delight to drink.

Make sure to pair this wine with light dishes. Although fuller than you might expect, it’s still fairly delicate and easily could be overwhelmed by fried or fatty foods. It would be perfect, though, with fresh shellfish. (Imported by Remy Amerique Inc.)

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