A funky-assed Moscato Rosa from Friuli by Bressan gets me thinking…

Just had to write a quick note on the Moscato Rosa that Jeff over at Vino Vino “tasted me on” (as we say in the biz) over the weekend…

It’s a new bottling by an old grower from Friuli, Bressan.

The winemaker calls it Rosantico (pronounced ROHZ-ahn-TEE-koh), a composite of rosa (pink) antico (ancient).

I’d tasted a lot of Moscato Rosa, canonically classified as a rosa or pink, as opposed to nero (black or red) or bianco (white), grape by Italian ampelography. But the wines were always dried-grape expressions of the variety. Historically, Moscato Rosa has been vinified as sweet wine, intended for long-term aging, in the Veneto and in Trentino-Alto Adige.

This wine is vinified instead as a dry wine.

However light in color, the wine was tannic and rich in body. Moscato Rosa is an aromatic grape and the nose on this wine was wild (literally): it ranged from the unctuously floral to technicolor red and stone fruit.

In the mouth the wine was more savory than I expected and it had some wonderful earth tones that worked with its fruit like roast vegetables and chutney.

I’ll have to go back to Vino Vino and revisit it (Jeff offered me a tasting pour during a recent event). But it does pose an epistemological question: when a “traditional” producer like Bressan takes an experimental approach to a native grape, is the resulting wine a “modern” expression of the variety?

Without a doubt an original and fascinating wine (although not cheap) and a great pretext for some epistemological reflection…