Type of Wine: Light-bodied white with low acidity and low tannins.
Origin: Moscato is widely known in Italy as MOSCATO di CANELLI because of the success of the Piedmont’s wineries that have made it famous as ASTI SPUMANTE. Moscato is the fourth most widely planted grape in Italy. No matter where it's produced, the wine is almost always sweet, low in alcohol and frizzante (frothy) or spumanti (sparkling). There are some versions made without bubbles, called naturale, but the grape's inclination to ferment rapidly makes this style difficult to produce. The best examples of these sparkling Muscat wines are MOSCATO D' ASTI and ASTI SPUMANTE.
Color: Moscato wines are either a pale yellow or a light gold color.
Description: Amazingly fragrant (rose petals and lichee fruit come to mind), Moscato’s fresh grapey character is easy to recognize, even when distilled as grappa. The best examples combine creaminess, a bright, refreshing fruitiness and a crisp, lingering finish.
Aging: This is a wine that does not benefit from aging in oak barrels. Instead, fermentation typically occurs in steel vats so that the delicate fruit complexity of the wine is not lost. Moscato should be consumed immediately upon its release.
Best Location: As with most varietals, warm days followed by cool nights build acidity and round fruit flavors.
Planting: The grapes were planted with a northern exposure. This aspect provides the benefit of a cool-down period from the summer heat. These cooler temperatures allow for the “grapes to rest” and not deplete the vines of their acids and flavor compounds through avoiding over-respiration.
Food Pairings: Enjoy Spumanti / Frizzante style wines alone or with a slice of pannetone. Serve other styles of Moscato with fresh fruit, pistachios or light pastries that are not too sweet.
See our general thoughts on food and wine pairings