SCARBOLO, Lauzacco, Grave del Friuli
We met the charming & dynamic Valter Scarbolo through Lidia & Joe Bastianich. It was Valter who helped them find suitable vineyards for their project, and the first vintages were made at Valter's winery. The Scarbolo estate in Lauzacco is located only 15 km from the Italian border with Slovenia. 30 ha are planted to traditional Friulian varieties — Friulano (formerly Tocai Friulano), Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Cabernet and Pinot Grigio. 160,000 bottles are produced.
Scarbolo’s vineyards are impeccable, and the fruit produces wines of remarkable intensity and extract. Valter took over the estate from his father, and has completely revitalized the vineyards and modernized the cellar. Tragically, in July 2010, the winery was completely destroyed by a tornado — a blessing of sorts that prompted a re-evaluation and confirmation of the ideals and goals of Valter & Maria Grazia and their children Mattia & Lara — not to mention an opportunity to further re-design and update. Having completed her oenology degree in the spring of 2017, Lara joined her father in the cellar, bringing addtional passion and energy to the family winery.
After being hand harvested, the juice for Scarbolo Pinot Grigio is given 24 hours of cold maceration on the skins before pressing, contributing body and colour. Aging on the lees 6 months with frequent ‘batonnage’ increases complexity and improves texture. The colour is an intense straw yellow with copper hues, and appealing aromas of golden delicious apples, honey and wild flowers.
Ramato is ‘the opposite of Rosato’, in that Valter uses red wine process on white grapes (Pinot Grigio) to create a full-bodied, copper-coloured, perfumed, and very interesting wine (Rosato is essentially white wine process on red grapes to create Rosé). My Time is Valter’s version of the requisite Friulan interpretation of a serious, complex, full-bodied blended white wine – Chardonnay, Friulano, & Sauvignon co-fermented and aged in French oak tonneaux. And James Suckling commented that Scarbolo produces ‘one of the best Sauvignons in Friuli’.
At the winery in Lauzacco, the Scarbolo family also operates the excellent Ristorante La Frasca, offering very fine seasonal, local dishes and a broad selection of regional wines. Scarbolo's La Frasca provided the inspiration for Bobby Stuckey's now famous Frasca in Boulder, Colorado. We highly recommend you try the original.