The Five Best Italian Riesling Wines
Riesling is one of the world’s noblest white wine grapes that even in Italy, most of all in the northern regions, can produce fantastic results. Here are some of the best of them to buy and keep in your cellar.
Riesling is considered, together with Chardonnay, to be the noblest white wine grape. This grape has two basic varieties: Riesling Rhineland (Rheinriesling) and Riesling Italic (Welschriesling). The first is produced in the Rhine and Moselle Valleys but is also cultivated in Austria. It is undoubtedly the most prestigious and produces great wines with a capacity to age long and is also made as a dessert wine, from late harvest grapes, frozen ones (Eiswein) or botrytized grapes (Trockenbeeranauslese).
Both varieties exist in Italy and are often confused. Riesling is above all cultivated in northern Italy with the Italic variety very widespread in Oltrepò where it makes light, fragrant wines, above all sparkling ones. Rhine Riesling, on the other hand, is present in other areas of Lombardy, in Veneto (especially the province of Treviso), in Friuli and, above all, Trentino Alto Adige (Valle Isarco and Valle Venosta) and the Langhe, where it is producing excellent results.
The wine has a nice acidity and structure and is juicy, saline and persistent with very particular aromas that recall citrus. It is best at least a couple of years after it was made, when the varietal’s typical and distinguishing hydrocarbon notes emerge.
What follows are those that, in our opinion, are the five best Italian Riesling wines currently on the market (aside from, obviously, the older vintages).