08 March 2021
With about 24,000 hectares cultivated, Campania’s vineyard area is about half the size of Piedmont’s. The most cultivated variety is Aglianico, followed by Falanghina, Barbera and Sangiovese, which occupy just over half of the region’s vine rows, at around 52%.
The rest of the area is planted with international vines that have adapted well to the climate of Campania, but also some interesting native vines: varieties that have belonged to the region for centuries and have found a particular expressive vocation in its volcanic soils.
Feudi di San Gregorio, one of the most important wineries in Southern Italy and one of the leading wineries in Campania in terms of cultivated area and bottle production, strongly believes in the enhancement of native vines, starting with those of Irpinia, on whose hills the winery stands. Since its foundation in 1986, this winery in Sorbo Serpico has launched a local wine “renaissance”, fully committed to the rediscovery of local wines and varieties, vinified according to the standards of purity and elegance that have brought Campania to the great tables of the world.
A renaissance that Feudi has imagined not only by carefully selecting vinification methods, but by designing an “iconic” cellar: a place that combined production and encounter, a «forum» dedicated to the knowledge and sharing of a new awareness of the territory, where art and wine become ambassadors of Campania and its excellence.
SIRICA, THE WINE OF THE FATHERS
Sirica is a mysterious vine with ancient origins that has almost completely disappeared in Campania. Although the traces of its cultivation have been lost over time, Feudi di San Gregorio has saved it from abandonment by retracing an “ampelographic archeology”. Starting from three "ancestral vineyards" of over two hundred years old, this variety has been thoroughly studied until it can be reproduced in an experimental vineyard. DNA analysis revealed common traits with Shiraz, Refosco and Teroldego. But Feudi di San Gregorio’s Campania Rosso IGT Sirica has characteristics that are very far from those of its genetic kin: ruby red with a vinous aroma, with hints of red fruit, slightly herbaceous, presenting sweet and non-astringent tannins. A surprising red wine, truly unique, a gem that brings the ancestral and unprecedented Campania back to our tables.
BIANCOLELLA, FROM ISCHIA WITH FLAVOR
A white grape that was probably brought from Corsica in ancient times, Biancolella is a variety that loves islands, volcanic soil and the sun. It is no coincidence that Ischia, Procida and Capri have become its chosen home, especially Ischia, where Biancolella is the main grape variety. It reveals its most authentic character on sediments of ashes and pumice. Feudi di San Gregorio makes Biancolella with grapes from Ischia: intense straw yellow color and clear aromas of aromatic herbs and citrus notes. On the palate, Biancolella has striking minerality and flavor, unmistakable expressions of its territory of origin.
FALANGHINA AND CODA DI VOLPE, THE GRAPES OF LACRYMA CHRISTI
The most famous white wine in Campania, Lacryma Christi, is made from Falanghina and Coda di Volpe, true expressions of Campania terroir. Falanghina, from the Greek phalangos (the poles planted in the ground to lift the vine shoots) is a variety that has long been forgotten. It is thought to have been cultivated since the Roman times, but – also thanks to Feudi di San Gregorio – it has been considered as one of the great Campania wines only in the last twenty years. Coda di Volpe, locally called as Caprettone, has even more ancient origins, perhaps resulting from the cuttings brought by the Greeks of Euboea during the first colonization of the Neapolitan coasts. Its name, caudas vulpium, appears in Pliny's Naturalis Historia and owes its fame precisely to its bunches’ similarity to foxtail: presenting a curving upper part that has always been a distinctive mark. In Irpinia, Coda di Volpe is used as a complementary grape variety in Fiano di Avellino Docg, and eventually, in Greco di Tufo. But when blended with Falanghina, it brings the Lacryma Christi denomination, vinified by Feudi di San Gregorio in an iconic label: straw yellow and fresh aromas of white fruits, with characteristic notes of citrus peel. A wine with an exceptional aromatic persistence that boasts delicacy and mineral notes (also brought by volcanic soils) as its strongest suits.