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Italian Varietals

Given the prominent part played by Italian immigrants in the early years of California viticulture, it's perhaps surprising that there is so little acreage planted to Sangiovese, Barbera, and the like, cuttings of which many of these newcomers brought with them from the Old World. As befits the culture out of which they arose, these are the quintessential "food wines," their comparatively high natural acidity making them a perfect foil for otherwise difficult-to-match-with-wine foods such as tomato-based sauces. Unfortunately, a domestic Sangiovese or Barbera will often cost as   More