Campania — pronounced like lasagna — is the Roman name for the coastal areas of Italy located on the “shin” of the boot.
“Campania” means happy, blessed fertile valley, and indeed it is: the soils are rich and fertile because of volcanic activity in the region from Mount Vesuvius including the AD 79 eruption that buried Pompeii under 13-20′ of ash, pumice, and rubble.
Ancient Greeks between the 8th and 7th centuries BC. arrived, and they observed the local viticulture being practiced, and they called them “the people who have vines on poles.”
When Vesuvius erupted, the rubble preserved the winemaking methods such as Doli – the amphora where wine was stored — as well as art. After Rome, Pompeii was the greatest wine production center and the greatest wine market.
Campania is famous for the beautiful landscape of the Amalfi coast and the volcanic fields of fire.
About 35% of the landscape is mountainous, 51% hilly, and 14% flat. Further inland is not a volcanic area but still covered in volcanic soils from eruptions with approximately 100 native grape varieties related to distinct terroir and cultural heritage growing in the region.
Today, important wines are three white wines: Greco, Fiano, Falanghina, and Agilanico, a red wine.
Clay, sand, and limestone in the hills helps to maintain acidity but the volcanic soils provide Magnesium and Sulphur which lend a smokiness. The altitude brings a cooler microclimate and a longer growing season.
Aglianico is considered one of Italy’s three best wine grapes, and it is Campania’s most planted red variety. Known as the Barolo of the south, Aglianico prefers volcanic soils and/or clay calcareous. It ripens at the end of harvest in late October and early November producing high acid, small thick skinned berries
The cuisine goes beyond pizza and spaghetti to caprese salad, stuffed pastas, anchovies, seafood, and pasta puttenesca with pork being an important food.
- Salami and cheeses
- Pizzas: pesto, boar sausage, Naples
- Caprese salad
- Wild Boar Ragu on papadelle pasta
WINES from Campania’s Feudi di San Gregorio
samples imported by Terlato provided for my review consideration
- 2018 Falanghina SRP $23
- 2017 “Rubrato” Irpinia Aglianicao SRP $27
- 2012 “Serpico” Irpinia Aglianico SRP $105
2018 – Falanghina Del Sannio
13% alcohol; about $23
Crazy fact about the name of this grape: Remember Named after the method of vine cultivation in Sannio at the end of the Roman Era using Falangs (“poles”), this Falanghina is ideal as an aperitif. It can also accompany various types of appetizers, plates of simple fish and vegetables as well as fresh cheeses.
Color: Pale straw, pale buttercup, buttercream frosting
Nose: Vanilla bean and seafoam,
Palate: Tart, bright, lime acidity, I felt that is was so acidic it was almost fizzy on the palate
Pairing: What a great food wine! This would be a fantastic oyster wine. Think fried calamari, Cesar salad, pesto. Great with rosemary marcona almonds, fantastic with a spicy fennel sausage.
OMG so good with pesto and sun-dried tomato pizza!
With boar sausage so much more rich. Pesto makes this wine so sweet. This wine and the caprese salad was so fantastic.
The surprise of the evening came when we sampled this wine with a tangerine cake for dessert. WOW! It brings out the tangerine pith and rind.
2017 – Rubrato Aglianico Feudi Di San Gregorio
14% alcohol; SRP $27
Color: Garnet, medium density, rose petals on the rim
Nose: Earthy, funky, cherry, hunky, sweaty
Palate: bold, smooth fruity, chewy, slippery, slick, glides, cherry
Pairing: Not good with the pesto pizza that was so amazing with the falanghina. Salami with pepper and The spicy arugula in the burretta salad is so fantastic with the wine. The rage and the pasta was fantastic with the dish.
Why was it so fantastic? There is a meaty chewiness in the wine ant the boar that goes together so nicely with the parpadelle. There is such umami and richness that goes together so nicely with the wine that brings everything together perfectly. Richness of the meat, thick pasta and bold wine are so very perfect together.
2012 – Serpico Feudi Di San Gregorio –
14% alcohol; SRP $75
Two words: OLD VINES.
And not just any old old vines — these vines are on their own roots. Most of the vineyards were decimated by disease but these survived!
Plus these old vines are located in the heart of the Taurasi which brings florals like red rose, and it’s the only one with turpenes that add those floral notes. The complexity and the spice here helps me understand why they call this the barolo of the south. This wine consistently scores in the mid-90s.
Color: Garnet, dense, blood red rim
Nose: Spice, cherry, alcohol, nutmeg, garam masala, curry-ish, earthy turmeric
Palate: Dirt, earth, cherry, heavy but smooth, dry cocoa , smooth, dry, but not too dry.
Pairing: Fantastic with our bold spicy fennel salami, so much so that we had to make a pizza to go with it using this sausage. It was perfect.
The boar ragu has such a rich rosemary flavor that is so prevalent in the sauce and goes so perfectly with the wine. Rich bold fruit, herbs and umami.
Check out the following posts which will all be live on Saturday, May 2nd:
- Camilla at Culinary Adventures with Camilla shares “Melanzane a Scarpone + Cantine Astroni Gragnano Penisola Sorrentina 2018”
- Wendy at A Day in the Life on the Farm posts “Polpette and Terredora di Paolo Lacryma Christi del Vesuvio Rosso”
- David at Cooking Chat discusses “Salmon with Pesto and Orzo with Wine from Campania“
- Pinny at Chinese Food and Wine Pairings adds “Campania’s Donnachiara Greco di Tufo Paired with Fish and Chips #ItalianFWT”
- Here at Wine Predator we share “3 Wines from Campania’s Feudi Di San Gregorio paired with pizza and wild boar ragu #ItalianFWT”
- Cindy at Grape Experiences writes “Exclusive to Campania: Coda di Volpe Bianco, the Tail of the Fox”
- Linda at My Full Wine Glass posts “A Coda di Volpe wine from Campania’s protector of native grapes (#ItalianFWT)”
- Jen at Vino Travels joins with “The Lycrima Christi wines of Vesuvio”
- Terri at Our Good Life shares “Chicken Pot Pie and A Beautiful Wine from Campania for a Spring Day”
- Katarina at Grapevine Adventures muses “Campania Makes You Dream Big About Amazing Wine”
- Nicole at Somm’s Table dishes on “Donnachiara Taurasi and Lamb Spezzatino”
- Jeff at Food Wine Click! writes about “Vini Alois: Champions of Campania’s Native Grapes”
- Rupal at Syrah Queen brings “NYC Somm Jordan Salcito Making A Splash With Campania Wines”
- Lauren at The Swirling Dervish adds “Mastroberardino Greco di Tufo: White Wine from Campania’s Volcanic Arch”
- Host Susannah at Avvinare is “Taking Another Look At Falanghina from Campania.”
Here’s the #ItalianFWT May 2020 Twitter Discussion Questions:
5/2/2020 11:00 a.m. EST
Welcome to the #ItalianFWT chat on Campania. Introduce yourself, and where you are tweeting from. Share a link to your blog if applicable.
5/2/2020 11:05 a.m. EST
Q1 We are talking about Campania this morning for today’s #ItalianFWT. Was it easy for you to locate an Italian wine from this region?
5/2/2020 11:10 a.m. EST
Q2 Tell us about the wine you found. Which province and which produce, share the grape variety/varieties #ItalianFWT
5/2/2020 11:15 a.m. EST
Q3 Was this a new region for you? Have you had much experience with Campania and its local grape varities? #ItalianFWT
5/2/2020 11:20 a.m. EST
Q4. Were you surprised about the wine you choose? Have you had other examples of those grapes? Share a picture and your tasting notes. #ItalianFWT
5/2/2020 11:30 a.m. EST
Q5 What dish did you prepare? How was the pairing? Share a link or photo with #ItalianFWT
5/2/2020 11:40 a.m. EST
Q6 #ItalianFWT participants, have you been to Campania? If so, how was the experience? Where did you go?
5/2/2020 11:45a.m. EST
Q7 #ItalianFWT What did you discover about Campania that you didn’t know through your research for your post?
5/2/2020 11:50 a.m. EST
Q8 Did you have any preconceived notions about this region that have now been changed following your writing? #ItalianFWT
5/2/2020 11:55 a.m. EST
Q9 #ItalianFWT Any final thoughts about Campania? Are you excited to take a trip to Campania (maybe after the coronavirus outbreak)? If so, where would you go?
5/2/2020 11:59 a.m. EST
Next month #ItalianFWT will be focusing on Sangiovese Around Italy hosted by @WendyKlik. Join us!
5/2/2020 12:00 p.m. EST
Thanks for joining #ItalianFWT to chat about the wines from Campania