Discover Italy’s Old Vine Wines

You’ve no doubt seen the term “old vines” on many wine labels (think Old Vine Zinfandel) but in Italy, the term takes on a whole meaning.

Readers often ask me: what’s your favorite wine? That’s a tough question, because I love so many, from full-bodied Barolos to the elegant, almost ethereal reds from Mt. Etna, from mineral-driven Soaves to complex, savory Verdicchios. But one thing many of my top picks have in common is vine age, with wines made from old vines leading the way.

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5 Must-Try Soaves

Delicious, affordable and ideal for the holidays, here’s your guide to Soave, one of Italy’s greatest whites.

Today, the region’s top producers have gone back to the old ways: they only use the two original grapes, and are focused on quality, not quantity—the same tenets that helped seduce drinkers some 40 years ago.

The best bottles hail from Soave Classico, the original hillside vinyards. Here, the volcanic soil, high altitude and old vines all conspire to create rich, deep wines with floral aromas, creamy white-fruit flavors and mineral notes.

The best part: These top-shelf wines are a downright steal, at least for now.

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Italy’s long-lived whites

It’s generally assumed that Italian white wines are cheap, cheerful and made to be consumed during the first year after the harvest. And while this may be the case for most Italian whites, and for the majority of white wines made around the globe, Italy produces some stunning whites that break the drink-now stereotype by developing depth and complexity as they age.

Read the article: Italy’s long-lived whites