Malvasia del Chianti

Malvasia del Chianti

Malvasia del Chianti, or Malvasia Toscana, is an aromatic white grape variety very common in Tuscany, where it has always been used together with Sangiovese and other native red grape varieties, in the "recipe" of Chianti and together with Trebbiano to produce Holy wine. From an agronomic point of view, Malvasia del Chianti corresponds to Malvasia Bianca Lunga, one of the most interesting variants of the grape, which combines a not too marked aroma with a good freshness that can certainly facilitate drinking.

History and origin

Malvasia is a grape variety that has an incredible amount of regional variants: Istrian Malvasia, Tuscan Malvasia (or Malvasia Lunga), Malvasia del Lazio (called Malvasia Puntinata), Malvasia Bianca di Candia, aromatic Malvasia ... just to name a few of the 17 variants that can be counted. To complicate the picture, it must be said that the regional names often overlap with those of the vine (as in the case of Malvasia del Chianti to be precise). The Malvasia family, in addition to white grape varieties (almost all), also includes some red grape varieties, whose production is however restricted to some limited areas. The vine comes from the area of ​​Istria and in general from North East Italy, however it seems that its most remote origin is to be found in the Mediterranean islands, between Malta (it seems that the name derives from that of the island) and Greece . From here it would spread to Sicily - Malvasia delle Lipari - with the Greek conquests, and to Venice through the dense commercial networks that the Serenissima had developed in the East.

Wines from Malvasia

Already in the Middle Ages Malvasia was appreciated for the sweet and aromatic passito wines that were produced in Malta and in the Greek islands with this grape. Over time, production has extended to the most disparate types of production, so much so that today Malvasia is by far one of the most versatile vines, with which almost every type of wine is produced: still dry, sparkling, passito. In Tuscany it is used to produce still dry white wines to be drunk young to better enjoy their delicate aroma and freshness. As required by the traditional "recipe" of Chianti by Bettino Ricasoli, Malvasia can also be used to a maximum of 10% for the production of Chianti D.O.C.G., while for Chianti Classico D.O.C.G. is not allowed. Finally, Malvasia del Chianti is used, as mentioned above, for the production of Vin Santo, where together with Trebbiano, the other white grape variety that has always been cultivated in Tuscany, it participates in the creation of this extraordinary passito wine.