Desiderio Jeio Prosecco Brut NV, Italy
What: I am always on the lookout for a good sparkling wine. Nothing quite says party-in-a-bottle like Prosecco, Champagne, Cremant or any sparkling wine.
The Desiderio Jeio Prosecco made by Bisol is a good choice for a sparkler at a bargain price. You could drink a lot of this sitting on the porch this summer and not break the bank or get tipsy. The alcohol content is only 11 percent.
In the glass it is a gorgeous straw yellow with green tints. Fresh aromas of citrus and flowers lead to a crisp mouth feel. I picked up flavors of pears, green apples and citrus. The finish is short and vibrant.
This is a good example of Prosecco, which comes from the northeast Italy area of Veneto. Most Americans are aware of Prosecco, but many still are not familiar with all its good qualities.
Though Prosecco prices range from extreme bargain to big investment, Prosecco generally is a better bargain than most other sparkling wines. As winemaking techniques have improved, the quality of this Italian sparkler is as good as any bubbly in the world.
The grape variety used is Glera (formerly Prosecco), and it makes very soft, fruity and refreshing sparkling wine with pear and floral flavors and aromas. Sometimes other grapes are blended in, but the Jeio Prosecco is 100 percent Glera.
Winery: There are records showing the Bisol family cultivating grapes and producing wine since 1542 in Valdobbiadene, a prime location in the Veneto region for quality Prosecco. The region is north of Venice in the northeast of Italy.
The family tradition of quality Prosecco has been handed down from father to son for generations. In the 1920s Desidiero Bisol re-established a winery after the devastation of World War I.
After the second world war Desiderio — or Jeio, as he was affectionately called by his wife — assigned different roles in the company to each of his four sons according to their education: Antonio took care of administration, Eliseo was responsible for oenology, Aurelio took over the running of the vineyards while Claudio became general manager of the company.
“Our family is one of Prosecco’s historical houses,” said Gianluca Bisol, the current managing director. “Our tradition has been intimately linked with the territory of Valdobbiadene since 1542 when our family started the grape growing and wine making business, handing it down through the generations.
“We try to obtain the finest expression out of the Valdobbiadene hills by directly cultivating more than 20 of the best located plots for grape growing. The feather in the cap is the plot nurtured on the summit of the Cartizze hill, the world’s most expensive vineyard dedicated to bubbles.”
The Bisols are practicing sustainable farming and reducing intervention in the winery. They also ferment grapes from each individual vineyard separately, allowing each lot to add something different from its soil. “The history of the land is therefore transferred into every bottle of Cru Bisol,” said Gianluca Bisol.
Bisol also spearheaded the restoration of the ancient, walled estate of Venissa, on the island of Mazzorbo in the heart of the Venetian Lagoon. There the family cultivates the historical native Venetian grape variety Dorona di Venezia.
The Doges who ruled Venice loved the wine, but it was believed to be extinct until several years ago when Gianluca discovered a few abandoned vines. This led to the limited production of the Venissa wine, available primarily to collectors.
Bisol makes a wide range of sparkling wines.
Goes with: We drank this wine with a delicious meal of fried shrimp, hush puppies, wild rice and tossed salad. Prosecco goes with just about any food, but I think it is especially good with fried food.
The light, bubbly wine cut through the heaviness of the fried shrimp and hush puppies. Every sip cleansed the palate.
The Jeio Prosecco would be especially good at a party or reception. It would match any food you had and make the occasion even more festive. You also could serve it with spicy food or dessert.
Desiderio Jeio Prosecco Brut NV, Italy