Yeast turns grape juice into wine by feeding off sugar in the grape juice in a process called fermentation. During fermentation, the sugars are converted into alcohol and carbon dioxide. There are many strains of yeast, and the types used to make wine have been cultured just for this purpose.During fermentation, yeast spores reproduce exponentially until all of the fermentable sugars have been consumed. The yeast imparts a taste to the finished wine, depending on various factors such as the strain of yeast used and the temperature during fermentation.
Once all the fermentable sugars have been consumed, the yeast falls to the bottom of the container. The wine is removed from the container, leaving the yeast, and is transferred to another container to mature while waiting to be bottled.
Wine gets its color when the vintner lets the skins soak in the juice during fermentation. White wine can be made from black grapes if the skins do not stay in contact with the juice—Champagne is the most famous example. If the skins are left in the wine for only a short amount of time, the vintner produces a rosé. If they are left for a longer time, the vintner produces a dark red wine.
Tannin is extracted from the skins, seeds and stems of the grapes—red wines contain more tannin than whites. White wines get a degree of tannin when they are fermented or aged in oak barrels.
Sulfites, or sulfur dioxide, occur naturally during the fermentation process. Sometimes a wine maker will add a little more because of its antibacterial and preservative qualities. White wines have more sulfites than red wines because they need more protection.
Even though there are very few ingredients, many things influence the taste of wine. Each grape variety will produce different flavors, aromas, and textures. The soil and climate where the grapes are grown dramatically affect the wine, and we believe that Italy is foremost in the world in producing wine that is much more than a simple drink, but an experience of inspiration.
American restaurants and retailers rely on Panebianco's knowledge—we are passionate about introducing Americans to an unusual and exciting range of fine Italian wine..
Good wine excites the senses with its color and texture, and its infinite array of aromas and flavors. It's astounding that the fermented juice of a single fruit, the grape, can offer us so much—from bubbly, water-white, light and lively to rich, purple-black, mellow, and full-bodied. Perhaps wine’s real distinguishing mark is the ability of the best wines to last for decades—to not just last, but improve. A fine wine may well be the creation of a single person, whose name is also often on the label. The artisanal wines produced today are personally authored products—unusual labors of love in today's culture of impersonal mass production.
As we drink wine for aesthetic pleasure, it becomes an important aspect of gastronomy, and a convivial activity with ancient social traditions. Shared with friends and family, wine inspires conversation and community—healthy for both body and soul.
Please join Panebianco as we celebrate an unusual and exciting range of fine Italian wine, imported so that American restaurants and retailers can share this wonderful experience with their guests.
Livio Panebianco grew up in Palermo, in a family that knew and appreciated high-quality Italian wine. Mr. Panebianco went into the wine business two decades ago, working to bring fine Italian wine to the wider world. Finding the best new wines for various companies, Mr. Panebianco consistently made a name for himself in the industry by introducing unknown classics and exciting new discoveries.When he started in New York in the early 1980’s, "all the places had the same wines," Mr. Panebianco explained. "I was successful in building a portfolio of unusual and interesting northern Italian producers and introducing wines like Arneis, Müller Thurgau,Tocai, Pigato, Refosco,and Gutturnio."
Living and working in Palermo, Milan, and New York City, Mr. Panebianco's dream came to fruition with his New York-based Italian wine importing company, Panebianco. The company provides fine Italian wine to American restaurants and retailers.
When Panebianco opened for business in 1997, Mr. Panebianco had a small, strong core group of imported Italian wines. His current portfolio spans Italian wine country from Piedmont to Sicily. Mr. Panebianco is committed to bringing out wines from small Italian wineries that produce a limited number of very fine wines—most of which are hard to find, even in Italy, and have received some of the most prestigious wine awards.
Mr. Panebianco's passion and expertise has placed Panebianco at the forefront of the wine industry, a position he intends to savor by continuing to introduce the American palate to an exciting selection of boutique-quality Italian wines that he calls "my little jewels."