Friulano: A Comprehensive Guide

what's friulano wine like infographic

Pronunciation: free-oo-LAH-noh

Friulano, a white wine varietal, originates from the Friuli region, also known as Friuli Venezia Giulia, located in northeastern Italy.  

What Type of Wine Is Friulano? 

Friulano is a medium-bodied white wine with medium acidity and a moderate alcohol level. It showcases its own unique style and is similar to and falls somewhere between Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc in terms of flavor profile.

Where Does Friulano Wine Come From?

Friulano, a grape variety originating from the Friuli region in northeastern Italy, holds a deep connection to the region’s winemaking traditions. It is primarily cultivated in Friuli Venezia Giulia, where it flourishes and showcases its distinctive characteristics.

If you really want to be transported to the region, check out this enchanting video review:

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Friulano in Friuli Venezia Giulia

In Friuli Venezia Giulia, Friulano is a prominent grape variety and plays a significant role in the region’s winemaking. It thrives in the diverse terroir and cool climate, contributing to the production of exceptional white wines. The region’s winemakers skillfully craft Friulano into wines that reflect the unique essence of Friuli Venezia Giulia.

Other Notable Friulano Growing Regions

Outside of Friuli Venezia Giulia, Friulano has gained recognition in various wine regions. It is increasingly planted in other parts of Italy, such as Veneto and Trentino, where it adds its own character to the local wine offerings. Friulano has also found its way to international vineyards, including those in California and Australia, where winemakers experiment with its potential.

How Is Friulano Wine Made?

Wine fermentation is where the magic happens. During fermentation, the natural sugars present in the grape juice are converted into alcohol by yeast. For Friulano wine, this transformation occurs in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks, allowing the wine to retain its vibrant fruit flavors and delicate aromas. 

Helpful Tip: Check out more about how wine fermentation works here.

What Does Friulano Smell Like?

Friulano exhibits a distinctive aroma profile characterized by notes of white flowers, ripe stone fruits, and a touch of almond.

What Does Friulano Taste Like?

Friulano displays a range of flavors that vary depending on the terroir and winemaking techniques. It offers a delicate balance of ripe peach, apricot, and citrus notes, accompanied by a pleasant almond-like bitterness. The wine’s vibrant acidity adds freshness and contributes to its overall structure.

Is Friulano Wine Sweet or Dry?

Friulano is a dry white wine often mistaken for cooler climate Sauvignon Blanc.

Helpful Tip: If you’re looking for a light, fruity, semi-sweet white wine, Friulano probably isn’t for you. Head over to this post on sweet white wines.

Food Pairing Suggestions for Friulano

Attribute: benjamin brunner

Friulano’s versatile nature makes it a delightful companion for a wide array of dishes. Its balanced acidity and fruit-driven flavors make it particularly well-suited for seafood, light pasta dishes, and vegetable-based meals. Consider pairing Friulano with dishes such as: 

  • Grilled fish
  • Risotto with seasonal vegetables
  • Fresh caprese salad

Helpful Tip: Still figuring out food and wine pairing? Head over to this post for a quick overview of how to pair the main flavors in food with your wine.

How to Serve Friulano Wine

how to serve friulano wine infographic

Temperature

Serve Friulano chilled but not overly cold, around 46-50°F (8-10°C). This temperature range allows the wine to showcase its aromatic complexity while remaining refreshing.

Glassware

Opt for a medium-sized white wine glass with a slightly tapered shape. This type of glass allows the aromas to concentrate, enhancing the overall tasting experience.

Decanting

Friulano does not require decanting. Simply open the bottle and pour the wine directly into the glass, swirl, sip, and enjoy.

Aging Potential

Friulano is generally enjoyed in its youthful state when its fruity flavors and fresh acidity are at their peak. This wine isn’t intended for long-term aging and is best consumed within a few years of its vintage.

Helpful Tip: Here’s what vintage means in wine.

Friulano Synonyms

Friulano is known by various synonyms, including Sauvignon vert, Sauvignonasse, Tai, and Tocai Friulano, depending on the region and winemaking traditions.

Notable Friulano Producers and Bottles to Try

When exploring Friulano, you’ll find wines from northeastern Italy taking center stage. Some notable wineries include:

These wineries offer a range of Friulano wines, each showcasing the unique expression and interpretation of this remarkable grape variety.

friulano wine - vineyard

The world of wine is constantly evolving, and Friulano is no exception to this ever-changing landscape. Winemakers in Friuli and beyond are experimenting with new ancient winemaking techniques like skin-fermented Fiulano for amber or orange wines.

Helpful Tip: Here’s what you need to know about orange wines and their connection to this region of the world. If you’re lucky enough to find an orange wine made from Fiulano, it’s worth taking a chance and tasting it!

Final Thoughts – Friulano as Must-Try White Wine Varietal

friulano wine - wine glasses

With its distinctive flavors, balanced acidity, and versatility, Friulano is a white wine varietal worth exploring. 

Here are three key takeaways to remember:

  1. Distinctive Flavor Profile: Friulano showcases flavors of ripe stone fruits, citrus, and a subtle almond note. Its vibrant acidity adds freshness, making it a refreshing choice.
  2. Food-Friendly: Friulano pairs well with a variety of dishes, particularly seafood, light pasta dishes, and vegetable-based meals. 
  3. Regional Identity: Friulano reflects the essence of the Friuli region, capturing its terroir and winemaking traditions. 

Friulano deserves a place among the must-try white wine varietals. Its unique characteristics reflect the Friuli region’s winemaking heritage and offer a delightful experience for wine enthusiasts looking to try something new.

Thirsty for More? 

Check out this list of white wines that are similar to Sauvignon Blanc (and Friulano).

You’ve heard the term “Bordeaux”, but just what makes a wine a Bordeaux? Here’s what you need to know.

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