This traditional Easter dish comes from Liguria, on Italy's north-west coast. The dry white wines you'll find in Ligurian bars and restaurants are commonly made from the vermentino grape; in fact, you'll find vermentino across the Mediterranean from Provence (where it's known as rolle) down through the vineyards of the Tuscan coast to Sardinia, where it produces that island's best whites. As well as producing one of the best wine styles to drink with seafood (particularly charcoal-grilled oily fish such as sardines), vermentino's naturally tart, chalky acidity, lively lemony flavour and relatively neutral aromatic qualities make it a great match for savoury dishes featuring salty cheeses and slightly bitter greens. Vermentino's adaptability - it performs well in vineyards from the hills of Liguria to the baking plains of Sardinia - has stood it in good stead in the increasing number of Australian wine regions where it is now grown. The vine's heat- and drought-tolerance really impressed growers in the recent run of hot vintages endured in dry, warm climate regions such as those along the Murray River. But early reports indicate that vermentino vines have also fared well during the decidedly damp 2011 growing season.
What better to pair with a savoury Italian-style pie this Easter than a light and savoury Italian-style white wine?