Amalfi coast (pic: Internet)
Hong Kong Italy Wine

Three must-know grapes from southern Italy

From “Nebbiolo of the South” to age-worthy Fiano, southern Italy’s Campania and Basilicata have more to offer than ancient ruins of mythical Pompeii and cerulean blue waters in Capri.

Fiano

Fiano's longevity can rival Chardonnay (pic: Vino Joy News)
Fiano’s longevity can rival Chardonnay (pic: Vino Joy News)

Fiano is a bright star in Southern Italy and is among a few native Italian white grapes that can tout its extraordinary ageing ability similar to Chardonnay.

It has the brightness of the sunny Amalfi coast, a rich body and waxy texture. The wine is assertive and charming and can transport you instantly to the breezy coast of Capri, with an unmistakable salinity.  

Unlike most white wines, Fiano is age-worthy. The most prominent wine region that made a name for the wine is Fiano di Avellino DOCG in Campania. It’s also grown in Sannio DOC Fiano and Cilento DOC Fiano. Like Aglianico, it has an affinity to volcanic soil, which imparts notes of burnt rubber and smoke to the resulting wine.

Its existence today again is credited to the scholarly Mastroberardino family who became the first producer in Campania to make a bottling of single varietal Fiano after it almost became extinct in mid 20th century after phylloxera.

At the turn of the century, the white wine is so popular that producers in Sicily, Tuscany, Puglia, Australia, and USA are trying their hands at the white grape.

Representative producers: Mastroberardino, Villa Raiano, Feudi di San Gregorio, Cantine di Marzo

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