Every once in a while, I am reminded that I live in a remarkable place.
Walnut Creek is a large suburban city, with between 65,000 and 75,000 residents. It isn’t known for its wine, nor is it really in a winegrowing region, with Napa and Sonoma to the north, Livermore just south, and Lodi to the east. But oh man, do we have some restaurants. One of them is Prima Ristorante and I have the good fortune of calling the bar manager there, Gwyneth Hogarth, a close personal friend.
She’s been bugging me for months—pretty much since I started this blog—to get off my ass, come in on a weeknight, and let her traipse me around Italy through the restaurant’s amazing wine list. And so I did, last night. And here is the beginning of the trip.
The Bastianich Friulano is 100% Friulano. Aged in stainless steel vats and for 7 months sur lie. In the glass, it’s a light straw, but with enough color to call it “golden.” Think somewhere between a Chardonnay and a Sauvignon Blanc on the color wheel.
The nose is light and understated, and, truth be told, left me wanting more. There is a note of pear, and a bit of some other dried fruit, but in general, the nose seemed rather uncomplex. The wine is medium-bodied with relatively low acid. It’s crisp and tart with notes of grass and apple, but again, the palate suffers from a similar complaint as the nose: gimme more.
All in all, this is not a spectacular wine. Nor is it in any way undrinkable. It’s just not something I can recommend you run out and track down. Gwyn had more in store for me, though. And I for you.