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Pecorino

This white grape variety grows in Marche and Abruzzo, Italy’s wine regions along the Adriatic coast. These characterful wines go well with cheese, salami and fried fish.
No, this variety has nothing to do with the hard sheep’s milk cheese of the same name, even if “pecora” is the Italian word for sheep. It is also called the “sheep grape”, but not because the small berries look like sheep droppings or the skins are white. In addition to cultivating wine grapes, farmers on the eastern slopes of the Apennines also used to keep sheep. For the sheep, the sweet, early-ripening grapes were a welcome treat. It was only with difficulty that the shepherds could stop their sheep snacking on these sweet fruits in the vineyards.
As Pecorino is not a high-yielding variety, it was on the brink of extinction. Then in the 1980s, winegrowers in the Marche wine region recognized its potential and began to plant the traditional grapes again. Drunk young, Pecorino displays a refreshing fruitiness with notes of citrus fruit, especially lemon and bergamot. Pecorino can easily mature for three to four years, at which point it turns a rich greenish yellow and the fresh fruit aromas give way to more floral notes.

Pecorino wines