The Unparalleled World of Italian Chardonnay

Oltrepò Pavese, Lombardia, North-Central Italy

Cordero San Giorgio: A Fusion of Tradition and Innovation in Lombardia’s Oltrepò Pavese

In 2019, the enterprising siblings Francesco, Lorenzo, and Caterina Cordero embarked on a new adventure outside of Piedmont. They acquired the historic estate of Tenuta San Giorgio, nestled in the picturesque hills of Oltrepò Pavese in Lombardia. With vineyards aged over 30 years, the wines produced by Cordero San Giorgio exude depth, complexity and beauty, making them a testament to the region’s rich winemaking heritage.

A Unique Winemaking Technique: Terracotta Amphorae and French Oak Barriques

What sets Cordero San Giorgio apart from other estates is their distinctive winemaking approach. They divide their wine between terracotta amphorae and French oak barriques, each contributing its own unique characteristics to the final product.

Terracotta Amphorae: Preserving Primary Aromas and Flavours

The use of terracotta amphorae harkens back to ancient winemaking techniques. These vessels help retain the grape’s primary aromas and flavours, allowing the true essence of the fruit to shine through. The porous nature of terracotta also permits subtle micro-oxygenation, enhancing the wine’s texture without overpowering its delicate nuances.

French Oak Barriques: Adding Depth and Spice

The French oak barriques provide a different dimension to the wine. As the wine ages in these barrels, it acquires subtle hints of baking spice and vanilla, adding layers of depth and intrigue. The oak also imparts a gentle structure, giving the wine additional complexity and balance.

A Harmonious Blend: Uniting Tradition and Innovation

By combining the wine from both terracotta amphorae and French oak barriques, Cordero San Giorgio creates a harmonious blend that is both rooted in tradition and infused with innovation. The result is a wine with a unique depth and specificity, displaying the best of what Lombardia’s Oltrepò Pavese region has to offer.

Embrace the captivating wines of Cordero San Giorgio and discover how their fusion of time-honoured techniques and modern ingenuity elevates the wines to new heights, reflecting the passion and dedication of the Cordero siblings in every sip.

Exploring Italy’s Chardonnay Regions

Italy is home to a wealth of Chardonnay-producing regions, each offering unique characteristics and flavours. Dive into the following regions to understand the nuances of Italian Chardonnay.

Alto Adige: Alpine Elegance

High-altitude vineyards in Alto Adige produce Chardonnays with remarkable acidity and minerality. These wines display delicate floral and fruity notes, with hints of green apple, lemon zest, and white peach.

Friuli-Venezia Giulia: Complex and Structured

Chardonnays from Friuli-Venezia Giulia are known for their complexity and structure. With a combination of cooling sea breezes and warm sunshine, the region produces wines that boast ripe fruit flavours and a rich, creamy mouthfeel.

Lombardy: Vibrant and Harmonious

In Lombardy, Chardonnays exhibit a lively character with balanced acidity and harmony. Notes of yellow apple, pear, and citrus are accompanied by a touch of oak, giving these wines a well-rounded profile.

The Art of Winemaking: Traditional Techniques and Modern Innovations

Italian winemakers employ both traditional and modern techniques to craft exceptional Chardonnays. Discover how these methods contribute to the wine’s unparalleled quality.

Barrel Fermentation and Aging

Barrel fermentation and ageing play crucial roles in shaping the profile of Italian Chardonnay. Fermentation in oak barrels imparts enhanced flavours and richness, while barrel ageing adds complexity and depth to the wine.

Stainless Steel Fermentation

Stainless steel fermentation is a modern technique that preserves the wine’s natural fruit flavours and acidity. This method results in fresh, crisp Chardonnays that showcase the grape’s true character.

Pairing Italian Chardonnay: From Appetisers to Desserts

The versatility of Italian Chardonnay makes it an ideal companion for various dishes. Explore these pairings to enhance your dining experience.

Light Fare and Seafood

The crispness and acidity of Italian Chardonnay make it a perfect match for light appetisers, salads, and seafood dishes. Pair it with a fresh Caprese salad, grilled shrimp, or a classic seafood risotto.

Creamy Pasta and White Meat

Full-bodied Chardonnays from regions like Friuli-Venezia Giulia and Lombardy complement creamy pasta dishes and white meat. Enjoy it with fettuccine Alfredo, chicken piccata, or veal scallopini.

Fruit-Based Desserts

The fruity notes in Italian Chardonnay harmonise with fruit-based desserts. A peach cobbler, apple tart, or lemon meringue pie will be elevated when paired with a glass of Chardonnay from Alto Adige or Lombardy.

Collecting and Cellaring: Investing in Italian Chardonnay

Italian Chardonnays have impressive ageing potential, making them a worthwhile addition to any wine collection.

Age-Worthy Wines

Well-made Chardonnays from Italy can age gracefully for up to 10 years or more. Their acidity and structure provide a solid foundation for the wine to evolve, developing more complex flavours and aromas over time.

Proper Storage

Store your Italian Chardonnay in a cool, dark environment with consistent temperature and humidity. Ideal conditions are 55°F ( 13°C ) and 70% relative humidity. Proper storage will ensure the wine matures elegantly and maintains its quality.

Exploring Sustainable and Organic Practices in Italian Chardonnay Production

Italian winemakers are increasingly adopting sustainable and organic practices to preserve the environment and produce high-quality Chardonnay.

Biodynamic Viticulture

Biodynamic viticulture is a holistic approach that treats the vineyard as a living ecosystem. This method emphasises soil health, biodiversity, and the use of natural preparations to enhance vine growth and grape quality.

Organic Winemaking

Organic winemaking avoids the use of synthetic chemicals and genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Instead, organic producers rely on natural alternatives, such as compost and cover crops, to maintain soil fertility and protect the vines from pests and diseases.

In Conclusion: Embrace the Richness and Diversity of Italian Chardonnay

Italian Chardonnay offers a wealth of flavours, textures, and styles that are unparalleled in the wine world. From the elegant, high-altitude wines of Alto Adige to the rich, full-bodied offerings of Friuli-Venezia Giulia and Lombardy, there is a Chardonnay to suit every palate. Explore the diverse regions, winemaking techniques, and food pairings that make Italian Chardonnay a truly exceptional experience. By appreciating the nuances and complexities of this remarkable wine, you’ll discover the essence of Italy in every sip.