Decoding Italian Whites
by Tom Wolf
If the naming conventions of Italian wines seem intimidating, you’re not alone. It takes time to learn how to parse the labels of the bottles we import, to realize what each term refers to and which is the most important in each name. Regrettably, our Italian producers can’t do much to make the deciphering easier. Italy is home to seemingly countless native grape varieties, and the country’s various zones are often crucial in the hierarchy of quality. So, at the very least, you’ll likely encounter the variety and subregion on the label. Then the cuvée name is sometimes included as well. All the information adds up to a lot. Below are three do-not-miss Italian white wines, labels decrypted.