This newsletter will be a little different. We will deviate from the usual photography subjects and focus on things like our trip to Italy. Spring being finally here. As for our trip, we have decided to talk about the wines we will be tasting and enjoying while having some delicious meal and overlooking a gorgeous breathtaking vista or in the company of some of the colorful, full of passion, locals. First let us tell you what to look for when purchasing Italian wines here in the US or abroad.
Make sure the seal with the letters DOC or DOCG is on the bottle you want to purchase. What is DOC and DOCG and why they are important? The letters DOC or DOCG mean Denominazione di Origine Controllata and Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita, the latter superior to the first. They refer to government guarantees of the wines origin. If those letters are not on your bottle, you will not know who, and where the wine was made.
Tuscany has been taking all the credit for amazing wines in Italy, the south regions have been overlooked, when in reality, the sunny south is the perfect place for some amazingly delicious wines. Let’s look at some from the area we will be visiting…Grapes have been grown in the fertile soil of Campania since ancient times, and one of the pleasures of traveling through this region in southern Italy is the chance to discover the unique varieties of wine produced in this area. From the rolling hillsides in the provinces of Benevento and Avellino to the steeply terraced vineyards of the Amalfi Coast and the islands of Capri and Ischia to the slopes of Mt. Vesuvius, the wines of Campania are as varied as the landscape…so let’s look at some.
A white wine, delicate and with very low alcohol, with a fruity, flowery aroma has a straw-yellow color with green tints. Ideal to be sipped all day by itself or to accompany fish and seafood dishes.
Forastera Another white wine with a straw-yellow color. The aroma is viny and slightly floral. It has a soft, dry taste. Ideal to accompany fish-based dishes and fresh cheeses and again, like the Biancolella, ideal for an all day sipping.
Per’ e Palumm
Has an intense ruby red color. The aroma is viny and delicate, medium bodied with a dry taste. Wonderfully paired up with the traditional rabbit dish, grilled or roast meats and mature cheeses.
The variety of red grapes called Aglianico is one of the most widespread in southern Italy, and it reaches perfection in the climate and terrain of Campania. Aglianico grapes are grown throughout the region, and are made into rich and full-bodied wines. They are also the base for the superb Taurasi DOCG wines made in the province of Avellino, the Falerno del Massico DOC wines produced in the province of Caserta and the Aglianico del Taburno DOC wines from the province of Benevento.
Two varieties of grapes are grown throughout the region of Campania, and both make excellent, crisp white wines. One of Italy’s oldest grape varieties, and cultivated in Campania since ancient Roman times, Falanghina is the white wine of the region. Its slightly sweet and fruity features make it the perfect white wine to serve with fish, pasta or even as a summer aperitivo.
Lacrima Christi del Vesuvio Local stories of heaven, hell and Lucifer’s fall are often told to explain the origin of the evocative name Lacryma Christi del Vesuvio, which means Christ’s Tears at Vesuvius. This name is used to describe the red, white and rosé wines made with grapes grown on the slopes of the volcano Mt. Vesuvius just outside of Naples. The red wine is a blend of Piedirosso, Sciascinoso and Aglianico grapes, while the whites are made with Verdeca, Coda di Volpe and Falanghina grapes.
One of Campania’s most distinct wines grown throughout the region. Also called Per’e Palummo in Neapolitan dialect, these deep purple grapes received their unusual name, which means “red feet,” since the skin color of the grapes is reminiscent of the color of pigeon feet. While that idea might not sound so appetizing, the wines made with this grape are a Campania specialty.
Bottom line…Our photography tour of Italy will be indeed dotted with some magnificent adventures, one of them is tasting the wonderful wines from this amazing rich area of Italy, rich in culture, foods, wines, scenery and lets not forget the world renounced southerners Italian hospitality…Wine is a way of life in Italy so when in Roma….. Hope to have a sip or two with you!