Some of my favorite wines that I drink on a regular basis come from Campania in Southern Italy. Here is a collection of a few of them. It’s important to mention that all cost $20 or less and I think they are great bargains.
Beneventano Falanghina IGT Donnachiara made from 100% Falanghina The vineyard is the Torre Cuso, the best location for Falanghina. The soil is volcanic, chalky clay, the vines are 16 years old, the training system is guyot and there are 2,500 vines per hectare. The grapes are not destemmed or crushed before pressing. Cold fermentation is in stainless steel and there is extended maceration. This is a crisp white wine with citrus fruit aromas and flavors, nice acidity and good minerality. I always have a bottle or two on hand. $16.
Irpinia Coda di Volpe DOC “Bianco di Bellona” 2012 Cavalier Pepe 100% Coda di Volpe (tail of the fox). Grapes are from estate vineyards in the hills around the towns of Carazita, Piesco and Pesano in Luogosano and Brussinera in Sant’Angelo all Esca. Soil is sand and clay and rich in volcanic matter and the vineyards are at 300 to 490 meters. The gapes are harvested in mid October. Selection takes place in the vineyard and in the cellar where the grapes are pressed whole. The must is cold clarified and then fermented at a low temperature. A short period of aging on the lees takes place and the wine remains in the bottle for a short time before release. The wine has hints of peach, a touch of pineapple and a touch of yellow fruit. It has developed into a very impressive wine. When I visited the winery I tasted a 2012 and it was in perfect condition.$16
Fiano di Avelllino 2017 Sarno 1860 made from 100% Fiano di Avellino. The vineyard is 8 hectares, the exposure is southeast and the training system is guyot. There are 5,500 plants per hectare and the harvest takes place the first two weeks in October by hand. Vinification is in steel at a controlled temperature with indigenous yeasts. The wine is aged for 8 months on the fine lees and four months in bottle before release. This is a wine with hints of citrus fruit, grapefruit, peach and toasted hazelnuts. This producer only makes Fiano di Avellino. $18
Fiano di Avellino “Radici” 2017 DOCG Mastroberardino made from 100% Fiano di Avellino from the 25 acre Santo del Sole vineyard at 1,815 feet with southwest exposure. The soil is sandy-loam. There are 1,600 vines per acre and the training system is guyot. The vineyard was planted in 2001. Harvest takes place the second half of October. Classic white wine vinification in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks. The wine remains in the bottle for 3 to 4 months before release. The wine has hints of pear, citrus fruit, a hint of pineapple and a touch of almonds. $18
Greco di Tufo 2017 DOCG Petilia made from 100% Greco. The vineyard is at 600 meters and the exposure is south/east. The soil is clay; volcanic, rich in minerals with a sulfurous sub soil. There are 4,000 vines per hectare and the training system is espalier with guyot pruning. The grapes are hand picked the second week of October. There is a soft pressing of the whole grapes and fermentation takes place in stainless steel vats at a controlled temperature. The wine remains in the bottle for 3 to 4 months before release. This is a well-structured and complex wine with hints of citrus fruit, lemon/lime, acacia and quince, a touch of minerality, good acidity and a very pleasing finish and long aftertaste. Greco di Tufo is a wine the can last for 20 years or more. Two weeks ago I had the 2009 and it was wonderful. $19
KATÁ IGP Catalanesca Del Mount Somma made from100% Catalanesca. Cantine Olivella The grapes are carefully selected and hand harvested in the first half of October. Fermentation and maturation is with natural yeast and takes place in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks. The refining process “sur lie” (lees contact starts in stainless steel and ends in the bottle after a three month period. The wine has very nice citrus aromas and flavors, with hints of apricot, cantaloupe and good acidity. There is a mineral aspect to the wine, which may come from the volcanic soil. $18
“Trentapioli” Spumante Brut Asprinino d’Aversa 2015 (Metodo Martinotti Brut) Salvatore Martusciello Made from 100% Asprinio d’Aversa from the tree-lined historic vineyard in the town of Casapesenna, in the Agro Aversano. The name of the wine Trentapioli comes from the thirty pegs of the ladder used to climb up to harvest the grapes. The vines are typical Alberata Aversana. In the Alberata training system, which dates back to the Etruscans, the vines grow up to 18 meters tall and are tied to tall poplar trees. The harvest is manual because ladders up to 20 meters high are used in order to reach the grapes. The grapes are placed in 18kg boxes. The soil is alluvial, volcanic and of medium texture. After crushing, the must is immediately separated from the skins and placed in an autoclave for a second fermentation. The wine is matured on its lees in an autoclave for about 90 days and was bottled on December 3. The wine has nice citrus fruit aromas and flavors with a hint of lime, herbs and good acidity. The wine can age for 5 to 6 years.$18
Costa d’Amalfi “Furore” made from 60% Falaghina and 40% Biancolella Marisa Cuomo The grapes are grown on coastal terraces at 22/550 meters and the exposure is south/south-westerly exposure. The soil is dolomitic limestone rack and the training system is pergola and/or atypical radical espalier. There are 7,000 vines per hectare. Grapes are hand harvested the first week of October. The grapes are destemmed, crushed and undergo a soft pressing. The free run must undergoes a cold static fining and is inoculated with selected yeasts. Fermentation takes place at a controlled temperature in steel tanks for 20/30 days. The wine remains in stainless steel tanks for four months before it is bottled. The wine has hints of citrus fruit and yellow peaches, a touch of wild flowers and acidic notes.$20
Pallagrello Bianco “Caiati” 2017 Michele Alois 100% Pallagrello Bianco from a 2.13-hectare vineyard at 280 meters, soil is volcanic with minerals. The training system is guyot, there are 4,800 plants per hectare and the harvest is in the middle of September. Fermentation takes place on the lees for 30 days. Malolactic fermentation is in stainless steel at a controlled temperature. The wine remains in the bottle for 4 months before release. The wine has hints of almonds, citrus fruit, melon and grapefruit with a long finish and pleasing aftertaste. $18
Lacryma Christ del Vesuvio Bianco 2015 made from 80% Caprettone, 15% Falanghina and 5% Greco. Cantine Matrone The Caprettone is distributed over three vineyards located at 30, 120 and 200 meters. Falanghina and Greco are at 30 meters. The Falanghina and Greco are fermented together with a pressing and fermentation without the pomace. The Caprettone is vinified alone with a 24-hour maceration period with the pomace. Then a soft pressing and fermentation takes place without temperature control. Andrea said this helps to obtain a wine with slightly more intense color and a bouquet of aromas that are more related to the varietal and less to the fruity or floral notes due to fermentation. The wine has hints of citrus, almond and a touch of sage with good acidity.$20
Lacryma Christi del Vesuvio DOC Bianco “Munazei” 100% Caprettone. CasaSetaro Production zone Vesuvius National Park. The training system is Vesuvian pergola and guyot. Vinification: Maceration in steel tanks at a controlled temperature and fermentation lasts for about 20 days. The wine remains in steel tanks for about 6 months and then in bottle for two months before release.This is a wine with hints of citrus fruit, a touch of peach and a note of wild flowers$17
Catalanesca 2018 IGP Tenuta Augustea made from 100% Catalanesca from the Somma Vesuviana zone. The soil is well-structured deep limestone with medium fertile consistency. The exposure is south/east and the vineyards are at 400/500 meters. The average age of the vines is 9/10 years and the training system is guyot. Harvest takes place in October. Fermentation is in steel tanks for 30 days at 18C. There is tartaric stabilization and filtration. This is an aromatic wine with hints of citrus fruit, apricot, a note of white flowers and good minerality. $19