If you’re looking for an unusual wine for Easter, look no further than Arneis. A wine varietal grown mostly in the Piedmont region of Italy, this white wine pairs well with the most unusual foods, such as asparagus! With its determined shoots popping out of the earth, asparagus is the iconic vegetable of spring but also a challenging food to enjoy with wine. Arneis not only complements asparagus but also fish, white meats and tomatoes.
Arneis literally means “little rascal” in Piedmontese and is generally dry and full bodied. With aromas of apricot, white peach and tangerine, it hints to the arrival of longer days and warmer evenings. Proving to be a fickle grape for winegrowers, Arneis can reward those diligent enough to learn the needs and desires of this little known grape. It can also be a wonderful treat for wine drinkers in the know.
If you have no luck finding an Arneis on the shelf, ask your local wine steward to order you up a bottle! Besides Italian producers, there are now several west coast wineries making Arneis, including Ponzi Vineyards, Seghesio Family Vineyards and Palmina Wines.