VintageTexas Sunday Cyclopedia of Wine: Trebbiano of Texas
The Trebbiano is a widely known wine grape varietal, but tends to be over-cropped and make rather neutral wines. However, it has the distinction of accounting for more than ten percent of Italy’s vineyards, and some say that it is the second most widely planted grape in the world.
Trebbiano is extensively cultivated in Tuscany where it is blended with Malvasia for making most of regions white wines. Most notably, it is known for Trebbiano d’Abruzzo, the pleasant white wine in the Abruzzi region of Italy. Trebbiano is also the principal grape variety found in Orvieto and a component of Frascati and (the white wine of my misspent youth) Soave.
Trebbiano is known in France as Ugni Blanc (not a particularly appealing sounding name), but it is prized for its ability to make high volume wines of crisp acidity that are used in the making of the brandies of Cognac and Armagnac.
Once on a stop at Duchman Family Winery, Bill Elsey gave me a tour of the facility and a tank taste of their new Texas Trebbiano. Frankly, I was quite surprised at the stronger than expected varietal character of this Italian grape variety now grown here in Texas. It was mouthwateringly crisp, wafting with scents of tropical fruits, citrus blossom with flavors of pear and melon.
I really didn’t think much more about it other thank how good it was. However, I recently heard through the Texas “grapevine” that besides Duchman Family Winery, several other wineries in Texas may be getting on Trebbiano bandwagon and rumor has it that there may be future releases from two more major Texas wine producers. It appears that Trebbiano is another natural grape variety for our warm grape growing climate here in Texas that it can ripen well, but retain important acidity.
The vast majority of Texas Trebbiano is coming from the Texas High Plains AVA with much of the early push for this grape coming from Bingham Family Vineyards near Brownfield, Texas, and the vision and guidance of winegrowing consultant, Bobby Cox.
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A testament to the widespread cultivation and popularity of the Trebbiano grape is the large number of names given to this grape in many regions and countries around the world: Albano, Biancone, Blanc Auba, Blanc De Cadillac, Blancoun, Bobiano, Bonebeou, Branquinha, Brocanico, Bubbiano, Buriano, Buzzetto, Cadillac, Cadillate, Castelli, Castelli Romani, Castillone, Chator, Clairette D’Afrique, Clairette De Vence, Clairette Ronde, Engana Rapazes, Espadeiro Branco, Falanchina, Greco, Gredelin, Hermitage White, Juni Blan, Lugana, Malvasia Fina, Muscadet Aigre, Padeiro Branco, Perugino, Procanico, Procanico Dell Isola D Elba, Procanico Portoferraio, Queue De Renard, Romani, Rossan De Nice, Rossetto, Rossola, Rossula, Roussan, Roussea, Rusciola, Saint Emilion, Saint Emilion Des Charentes, Santoro, Shiraz White, Spoletino, Talia, Trebbianello, Trebbiano, Trebbiano Della Fiamma, Trebbiano Di Cesene, Trebbiano Di Empoli, Trebbiano Di Lucca, Trebbiano Di Tortona, Trebbiano Fiorentino, Trebbiano Toscano, Trebbianone, Tribbiano, Tribbiano Forte, Turbiano, Ugni Blanc, Bouan, Beau, Thalia,Trebbiano di Soave, Trebbiano Romagnolo, Trebbiano Gallo and Trebbiano d’Abruzzo.