Verdicchio in Le Marche, Italy
Origins | Burton Anderson (1990, p171) says the legend of Verdicchio in Le Marche was ‘built around Alaric, king of the Visigoths, who in the fourth century AD encouraged his troops with the wine as they crossed the Apennines to sack Rome. More credible accounts trace Verdicchio’s origins to the fourteenth century, after the feudal domaines known as marche had been unified under the Holy Roman Empire.’
The modern era | In the 1950s Fazi-Battaglia helped give Verdicchio an international impact having designed a green bottle shaped like the clay amphora the Greeks used to ship Marche wines from what is now Ancona. Nick-named ‘La Lolla’, the Fazi-Battaglia bottle had a paper scroll or ‘cartoglio’ tied around the neck.
Versatility | Burton Anderson (1990, p171) points out that Verdicchio has the advantage of excelling as base for sparkling wine by both bottle and tank fermented methods. David Gleave (1989, p125-6) describes Verdicchio as like an ‘Adriatic Muscadat’ due to its salty, crisp, nutty characteristics and affinity with seafood.
Flavours | Le Marche producers who choose to pick Verdicchio slightly early do so to accentuate aromatics formed by thiols.
David Gleave, ‘The Wines of Italy‘ (Salamander Books, London, 1989).
Burton Anderson, ‘The Wine Atlas of Italy by Burton Anderson, Mitchell Beazley, 1990 p171.