Right as the temperatures are finding their most unbearable peak of this summer, and the humidity is suffocating just from the car to the ABC store entrance, I make it my mission to find the most refreshing wines that will be sure to keep you cool, and keep your summer sizzling. This extraordinary Italian white wine jumps right out into the front of the crowd with its unique style and interesting origins.
Coming to us from Tenuta Cavalier Pepe, their “Nestor” Greco di Tufo is one that has escaped the mainstream redundancies of the boring and bland lifeless white wines that only seem to provide liquid in the glass. Instead, this refreshing summer companion offers complexities and a great story to go with it.
The Greco di Tufo varietal has been cultivated since even before Rome. The hills of Tufo, where these vines originate, are volcanic and offer immense mineral tones. The name Nestor goes back to Greek times; in Homeric’s poems, Nestor is a hero said to have had extraordinary strength and who loved drinking this delicious nectar.
How’s that for an endorsement? A wine long adored even in mythology. The Greco di Tufo ($18) is not alone in company on our shelves. We also carry what I like to call the little sister white, Pepe Lila Beneventano Falanghina ($12) which is a lighter approach, but still a great match with your favorite shellfish. Another great red wine, Tenuta Pepe Opera Mia Taurasi ($40), offers a bold, beautifully fruit-laced earth. Or try the milder little brother red, Tenuta Pepe Terra del Irpinia Agilianico, for just $14.
The color boasts an intense golden hue with complex aromas of pineapple and white flowers, a touch of delicate minerals and a full, rich, incredibly lush texture in the mouth with peach, almond and apricot makes this dry white wine an instant favorite for your days by the water, or paired with the delicious fish you’ll be cooking up tonight.
Tenuta hand picks the fruit, then they are lightly pressed and cold decanted which keeps the color clear. Left to age on lees for two months, then aged for another two months in the bottle, the final product is a tribute to the wonderful jewels that Italy keeps hidden away in its timeless countrysides.
A very welcomed alternative to the traditional Italian favorite Pinot Grigio, which is what all your friends know and love, let this be the wine you introduce to them, a rare find, a fast favorite, and a refreshing tribute to the blazing summer heat!
Christina Bylor, ABC Fine Wine & Spirits wine consultant