Good Langhe Bianco should be fresh, rich and intriguing, and Paolo Monti's winemaker Roberto Gerbino has got it spot on with his gently oaked L'Aura 2008. There are few more delicious introductions to the brilliance of northern Italian whites.
Pier Paolo Monti founded his estate in the Langhe hills in 1996 by buying several vineyards and building a state of the art winery. He now grows six grape varieties, including Nebbiolo for his Barolo, plus Barbera, Cabernet, Merlot, Chardonnay and Riesling. Over the years his wines have won numerous medals, which Pier Paolo and winemaker Roberto Gerbino put down to attentive vineyard management, modern vinification and meticulous oak maturation. L'Aura is a mix of Chardonnay and Riesling, grown on the steep Langhe slopes. Fermentation and ageing in new French oak have lent the Chardonnay a real richness, cut through by lime zipped Riesling. With racy peach, passion fruit and vanilla notes, this wine is a great match for salmon en croute.