This white grape variety is known for producing light, floral varietal wines mainly in Friuli. It is thought to have originated in Greece, but its first recorded mention was in 1296, when Pope Boniface VIII adjudicated in a dispute involving the sale of “Rabola” between the Bishop of Trieste and the monastery of San Giorgio Maggiore in Venezia. It was respected enough that by 1402 the city of Udine legislated against its adulteration. As with many varieties, it suffered greatly during the 19th century phylloxera outbreak, and by the mid-1990s only accounted for less than one per cent of all vines grown there.
The crisp white wines of Ribolla Gialla have a good natural acidity, with notes including citrus, almond and apple. Tasted while young, the fruit flavours are more pronounced, but a few months of ageing can bring out the full potential of the grape.