An ancient grape, Malvasia produces a range of wines that can be dry, sparkling, or sweet. Thought to originally hail from Greece, Malvasia thrives in Mediterranean countries, with many sub-varieties. Malvasia tends to deliver notes of white peach, white currants, and apricot with occasional smokiness. It pairs fantastically with baked pear topped with gorgonzola cheese and honey, crusted haddock filets, and braised meat.
Often found in blends, Malvasia is mainly produced in Portugal, Italy, and Spain. With many sub-varieties in Duoro, Portugal, Malvasia is used in the production of white port. Whereas in Spain, Malvasia, blended with Viura, can be found in Rioja and Navarra wines, as its low acidity adds body and texture to the wines. When paired with Trebbiano, they produce delicious, inexpensive, Italian table wines.
Looking to lose yourself in a bottle of wine? Here are some wines to try:
Grape Photo Courtesy of UC Davis