The Wines Of Sannio – Campania’s Hidden Jewel


The area of Campania in southwestern Italy is well-known for a number of points of interest, similar to Pompeii, the Amalfi Coast and naturally the marvelous metropolis of Napoli, which for a lot of locals and vacationers, is all about its pizzerie. However the wines of Campania, whereas turning into extra acknowledged nowadays, are nonetheless below appeciated on this planet of Italian wines.

Sadly, that is all too true for the Sannio district, located within the province of Benevento in northern Campania. Whereas the wines from Irpinia similar to Greco di Tufo, Fiano di Avellino and Taurasi achieve a lot of the consideration for the Campania area, the wines of the opposite provinces and districts appear to be recognized solely be the passionate hardcore.

However issues could quickly be altering for the wines of Sannio, as native producers are working tougher than ever of their deal with Falanghina, a white varietal planted in all 5 provinces in Campania, in addition to Aglianico, a crimson grape that’s used to supply strong, long-aging reds.

There are 100 wineries in Sannio, and nearly each one among them makes Falanghina. “90% of all of the Falanghina on this planet is produced in Sannio,” declares Libero Rillo, proprietor of the Fontanavecchia vineyard within the city of Torrecuso. “Falanghina is the best-known wine of Campania,” he states. It also needs to be famous that this isn’t one thing new within the space, as Falanghina has been grown right here for greater than 2000 years.

Often known as Falanghina del Sannio (a DOC wine), that is certainly one of the pleasant dry white wines produced wherever on this planet. The best examples provide perfumes of lemon zest, melon and pear together with notes of yellow flowers similar to peony and poppy. Usually the wines are medium-bodied and are produced with none use of oak, in order to spotlight the dazzling aromatics. The signature of Falanghina is its pure acidity that’s vigorous, however not too excessive or sharp. This not solely helps steadiness the wines, but in addition preserves freshness and permits the wine to age effectively. Whereas most examples are consumed throughout the first two to a few years, many variations are perfect some seven to 10 years down the street.

Pure acidity additionally makes Falanghina a great wine for pairing with quite a few meals, starting from mozzarella cheese to shrimp ready in nearly any type, to sure pastas, similar to gnocchi con vongole (gnocchi with clams). As some examples of Falanghina are extra full-bodied, these examples may even stand as much as roast hen or veal medallions. In fact, Falanghina del Sannio can also be fantastic by itself, so don’t assume you must put together a particular meal to take pleasure in this pleasant wine. One other good thing about having fun with Falanghina is that the wines should not costly, as many examples on retail cabinets in America vary between $18 and $22 a bottle.

Together with Falanghina del Sannio the first focus on this space has been with Aglianico del Taburno, a muscular crimson created from the Aglianico varietal, the identical grape used to supply Taurasi, Campania’s most well-known and long-lived crimson wine.

Rillo, who produces a number of examples of Aglianico del Taburno (Taburno is a close-by mountain peak at an elevation over 4000 toes), explains that this wine is completely different than Taurasi, regardless of its related use of Aglianico. “They’re two fully completely different wines. Aglianico del Taburno turns into extra balanced at an earlier age than Taurasi. It relies upon with every vineyard as to how lengthy these wines will age. On the whole, we make our wines from Aglianico extra approachable than that of Taurasi and different prime examples of Aglianico from Irpinia.”

That’s not to say that Aglianico del Taburno is a light-weight wine; on the contrary, this can be a medium-full to full-bodied crimson that typically must be cellared for a couple of years after its launch. At Fontanaveccia, one of the critically praised examples of this wine is the Vigna Cataratte, a single winery providing that’s at is greatest a minimum of a decade after the classic; different prime examples of Aglianico del Taburno embody these from Fattoria La Rivolta, Ocone and La Fortezza.

So when you’re not conversant in the wines of Sannio, do your self a favor and provides these wines a strive. And bear in mind, whereas many are confused by the wide selection of Italian wines from the complete nation, you solely have to recollect two wines from Sannio: Falanghina del Sannio and Aglianico del Taburno.

Notes on present releases:

Mustilli Falanghina del Sannio 2020 – Lovely aromas of pineapple, mandarin oranges and quince. Medium-bodied with superb acidity, this provides scrumptious varietal fruit character and is completely balanced; take pleasure in over the following 3-6 years. Glorious

Cantina di Solopacea Falanghina del Sannio 2020 – Aromas of lemon zest and dried yellow flowers, wonderful complexity and a definite minerality within the end. That is very spectacular; take pleasure in over the following 3-5 years. Glorious

Nifo Sarrapochiello Falanghina del Sannio “Alenta” 2017 – Aromas of ripe golden apples, freshly picked lemons and yellow poppy. Excellent to wonderful richness on the palate and a prolonged end. Falanghina can age and this instance is notable proof of that; peak consuming in 4-6 years. Excellent

Fontanavecchia Falanghina del Sannio “Libero” 2015 – Libero is a particular Falanghina created from late harvest grapes, and matured in barriques. Brilliant yellow of medium-intensity – lovely shade for a Falanghina of this age. Aromas of spearmint, melon and dogwood. Excellent persistence, superb acidity, wonderful complexity; notes of inexperienced tea and citrus peel within the end; the oak notes are very delicate. Displaying nice freshness, this can be a fashionable Falanghina with excellent varietal purity. Get pleasure from over the following 3-6 years. Excellent

Fontanavecchia Aglianico del Taburno 2017 – Black cherry, mocha and oregano. aromas. Medium-full with superb focus, that is ripe and has assertive medium-weight tannins, balanced acidity and evident oak notes. It is a younger, barely sharp Aglianico that wants time to easy out the tough edges. Peak in 5-7 years. Very Good

Fontanavecchia Aglianico del Taburno “Vigna Cataratte” 2017 – Black cherry, tobacco and darkish chocolate aromas. That is fairly wealthy on the palate, providing layers of taste. There are full tannins, however they’re balanced, and the end is kind of lengthy. Glorious complexity and concord, this can be a fashionable, extremely spectacular Aglianico del Taburno that can peak in 7-10 years. Excellent

La Guardiense “I Mille per L’Aglianico” 2013 (Sannio Aglianico DOP) Together with Aglianico del Taburno, a DOCG wine (one among solely 4 within the Campania area), there may be additionally a Sannio Aglianico denomination. Textbook aromas of bitter chocolate and black cherry together with notes of vanilla. Medium-full with wonderful focus, this provides ripe varietal fruit, medium-full tannins, good acidity and ample wooden notes. That is younger and does want time to quiet down, however it’s spectacular nonetheless, peak in 7-10 years. Glorious


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