Wine of the Week: Hail Niro! Pecorino Wine from Abruzzo, Italy ($18)
Dwight Casimere | 9/7/2017, 9:30 a.m.
A terrific wine for under $20 that is an expression of everything that the indigenous grapes of central Italy are all about. Niro Pecorino 2014 is made from the Pecorino grape; an ancient, native grape that is so named because it is the first to ripen and attracts the attention of grazing sheep, called Pecora in Italian. This wine is made in a region that has been famous for winemaking since the time of the Romans, and the current winemakers take advantage of both traditional and modern techniques to create a stunning wine that is full of tropical fruit and herb flavors. Think pineapple, white grapefruit, hints of Meyer lemon and touches of fresh sage or wild oregano, with a hint of the rich mineral soil in which the grapes are grown, and you have the complete flavor profile of Niro Pecorino. The grapes are carefully selected for ripeness and then gently pressed, using ancient techniques, so as to preserve the delicate4 fruit flavor. Thy then undergo a fermentation process at very low temperatures while the skins are allowed to remain in contact to enhance t he aroma and bolster the flavor of the wine. The result is a beautiful, straw colored wine that is perfect well chilled on its own as an aperitif or with soft ripened cheeses. For a light lunch, let the wine carry you through an entree of fresh poached or grilled salmon with a hint of fresh herbs sort an omelette with wild mushrooms and goats cheese or soft-ripened sheep's milk cheese, so apropos for a wine named for the sheep that graze in the idyllic Abruzzo wine region between the Apennines mountains and the Adriatic Sea. Remember to drink responsibly.