Synonym: Malvasia, Malvasia bianca, Malvasia d’Istria, Malvasia friulana, Malvasia Weiss, Malvasia del Corso, Istriana (Istria).
Commonly mistaken for: Malvasia di Candia, Malvasia Toscana, Malvasia trevigiana, Prosecco Malvasia, Malvasia nostrale, Malvasia comune, Malvasia puntinata, Malvasia bianca del Piemonte.
Origin: Its origins are Greek (Peloponneso), in fact the name Malvasia derives from the Greek city Monembasia. The original vines were probably brought in to Italy by Crusaders in 1214, after their return from Costantinopoli. Famous vine since 1300, it was cultivated in the Friuli-Venezia Giulia region in North-Eastern Italy and Istrian region (western part of Croatia), from where the adjective “Istriana” comes from (Experimental Institute of Gorizia and Conegliano, 1932; Dalmasso, 1937).
Malvasia Istriana is considered one of the most important variety of the “Malvasia family or Malvasie”; inside this group there are some varieties with very different characteristics; sometimes the only thing that they have in common is the name. This is because during the Middle Ages these varieties were used to produce wines with similar characteristic (aromatic and alcoholic wines and with high sugary residue).
Agronomic and environmental aspects: A very vigorous vine, with a very good and quite constant yield. It has a preference for soils with a good percentage of clay, quite compact and it needs better exposure. The vines require wide training systems and log pruning, also a VSP can give good results, but only with well-balanced shoots thinning and summer pruning.
Diseases, pests and disorders: Shows a good resistance to most common diseases. Susceptible to powdery mildew and magnesium deficiency (can show marginal and interveinal yellowing on the leaf blade).
Growing Tip: wide open, cottony, of green colour with yellowish edges.
Leaf: of medium-large dimensions, pentagonal shape, 3-lobed or entire leaf. Has an open, V-shaped petiolar sinus, lateral superior sinuses are V-U shaped, while inferior are rare. The profile is revolute. The upper and under surface is hairless.
Cluster: medium, of cylindrical form with one wings, semi-compact: from densely distributed berries to single berries with some visible pedicels.
Berry: of medium dimensions, spherical, with waxy bloom, thick skin, of yellowish-green. [1.42 g 10/03/2005]
- VCR 4:This clone was selected in Cividale del Friuli (province of Udine); vine has very good vigour, with a good and constant yield. The bunch is long, semi-compact or semi-loose, of cylindrical-conical, is often winged. The berry has large size. Good resistance to botrytis and medium resistance to powdery mildew.
Wine is straw-yellow in colour, with golden or greenish glints, quite alcoholic, with a glycerine smoothness. It is fresh, slightly aromatic, harmonious and quite fine. Rarely bottled as a stand-alone varietal, its most frequent blendmates are Chardonnay, Sauvignon blanc, Pinot blanc, Prosecco and Muscat. It is used in more than fifty DOC Carso, Colli orientali del Friuli, Colli Goriziani o Collio, Friuli Aquileia, Friuli Latisana, etc. This variety is one of the most important in the production of eleven “Malvasie” DOC.