The Umani Ronchi Villa Bianchi is great cheap Italian white wine, destined for the $10 Hall of Fame
Vineyard Brands is an importer renowned for its oh so tasteful portfolio of high-end wines, which include Champagne, Burgundy, and Brunello. But its greatness as an importer is also defined by the cheap wine that it imports, like the $10 grocery store staple, the Spanish Marques de Cacera.
Which brings us to the Umani Ronchi ($10, purchased, 12.5%), an Italian white made with the unheralded verdicchio grape in the equally unheralded Marches region. This is one of those wines that makes me glad I write about wine – professionally made but also terroir driven and representative of its time and place. It’s the kind of cheap wine that reminds me why I do this, and that wine does not have to be about snobbery and pretense.
How to describe everything that is going on here? Perhaps a touch of almond in the aroma, with some delicate citrus (lemon peel?) flavors, and an almost apricot pit quality to the finish. Best yet, all of that is balanced and Italian, without any allowance made for smoothness or ripe fruit or focus groups.
Highly recommended, and almost certain to be added to the 2018 $10 Hall of Fame. Drink this chilled on its own or with something like spaghetti and clam sauce or chicken and mushrooms braised in white wine, where this is the wine for both cooking and drinking.
Imported by Vineyard Brands