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Obscure Wine Grapes: Piculit Neri

Piculit Neri is an ancient grape varietal from Italy that was popular in Roman times but went out of favor. Progressive winemakers have recently revived the almost-forgotten grape, along with several others that were once popular in the Friuli Venezia-Giulia region, an area in the North of Italy that borders Austria. Piculit Neri yields a rounded, fruity red wine that is intensely aromatic -- one critic described it as the red wine equivalent to a floral Moscato.

It's painful to imagine how many wonderful old varieties of grapes have been torn out of the vineyards of the world to make way for the creeping proliferation of Cabernet and Merlot. You can find this bottle of Piculit Neri Modello Delle Venezie at Nundini Imported Food Store on North Shepherd for under $20.

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