One of the best-known white varieties, this grape of French origin has a long history in northern Italy, but until recently was not much planted in the south. Clusters are fairly small, cylindrical and winged. The round, smallish berries are thick-skinned and golden yellow in colour. It's a tremendously aristocratic grape, unanimously considered among the most refined of the white varieties. Unlike most other 'noble' grapes, it combines its notable sensory qualities with robust health and relative ease of cultivation: it's resistant to cold, but makes itself at home in hot climates too. It flowers and matures early, thus avoiding the threat of diseases linked to cold and autumn humidity.