Drunk on Pelaverga
Italy's eno-aphrodisiac arrives stateside
Please welcome Pelaverga, an uncommon Italian wine said to be an aphrodisiac, to San Francisco.
Thanks to intrepid importers and curious sommeliers, this light red from the edge of Piedmont's Barolo zone has gained a foothold here. Now, San Francisco is the unofficial second city of Pelaverga.
Feisty and fresh, this wine goes with nearly everything. While we can't vouch for its romance-enhancing qualities, we will state that Pelaverga might be the perfect brunchtime red.
Here, three of our favorite bottles and where to find them:
2008 Castello di Verduno Basadone ($25) This subtle red from a historic estate combines apple and plum flavors around an earthy core. Available at Bi-Rite Market, 3639 18th Street, 415-241-9760 or biritemarket.com; available by the glass ($12) at SPQR, 1911 Fillmore St., 415-771-7779 or spqrsf.com
2008 G.B. Burlotto ($12 a glass; $48 a bottle) This elegant bottling is from one of the oldest Pelaverga producers. Warning: The scents of strawberry and rose are intoxicating. Available at Perbacco, 230 California St.; 415-955-0663 or perbaccosf.com
2009 Fratelli Alessandria ($25) This shows the earthier side of Pelaverga, with a spicy dose of cranberry and focused acidity. Available at Biondivino, 1450 Green St.; 415-673-2320 or biondivino.com