Grapes Friulano(40%), Malvasia Istriana (40%), Ribolla Gialla (20%)
A full white that is named after Roberto’s mother, Jelka (pronounced yell-ka) is the Slovenian for Gabriella. The focus of this wine has changed subtly over the years. The cuvee is largely unchanged, its vineyard covers a hectare and which was planted in 1960, 1974, 1975 and 1993 at around 4500 vines per hectare.
This is a tribute to the historical vines of Pradis. Ribolla Gialla is the vine on which the Collio’s trademark yellow is taken, it is best known for fresh, light, floral wines, Malvasia Istriana is particular to the Istrian peninsula and has nothing to do with Tuscan, Puglian or Emilia Romanian Malvasia. Friulano used to be called Tocai Friulano, legal wrangling ridiculously forced the change, however, it is essentially Sauvignonasse, a relative of Sauvignon that is well suited to these parts. The characteristics are less green and herbaceous and the wines tend to be softer and richer.
The Friulano is fermented on the skins in open oak casks using wild yeasts and no temperature control, the Ribolla Gialla and Malvasia Istriana are macerated on the skins for eight to twelve days before being fermented and aged in tonneaux. After ten months the wine is blended and aged in botti (large barrels) where it remains for around eight months before bottling.
Unrestrained joy on so many levels. Big waxy fruit, spiced with yellow berry and ripe apple, a legend.
There is no rush to open this wine, except that the quantities made are tiny - so if you are going to add a few bottles to your cellar it is worth checking it out now. I have enjoyed a vertical tasting of ten vintages with Roberto, the essential fruit and mineral DNA is consistent, though over the years secondary flor and honey flavours join the fresh, floral fruit. It is a food wine, important and full and lovely with seafood risotto or the like. 5000 bottles produced. Best 2016-2021. 13.5%