My summer adventures could not skip the country with a very special place in my heart—Italy!
Not just because I’m passionate about most of their wines, but I’m obsessed with their food. And as we know in Italy wine and food exist as one—together they create the meal.
Pizza is probably my favorite food followed by gelato. Yep, that’s not in-line with my usual healthy recipes, but it’s because in Italy they just seem more nutritious, so they must be, right?
One of my husband and I’s favorite wines is Falanghina, which is from the Campania region of Italy. Campania is the region that includes Naples, home of the Napoletana pizza and the mesmerizing Amalfi Coast…(aaaaaaah—just pausing a moment to reflect).
The more recognizable wines of this region are the white wines, Greco de Tufo made from the Greco grape and Fiano, as well as the red wine, Taurasi made from the Aglianico grape. These are certainly flirt-worthy, but Falanghina is a true love of mine.
These wines are alluring with aromas of tropical fruit, peaches, apricots, apples and citrus complemented by floral notes, like honeysuckle or even honey. On the palate, they are crisp but with structure so they’re capable of holding up to a variety of foods—pair it with anything from seafood to a Margherita pizza.
Falanghina di Sannio DOC is a hilly region northeast of Napoli and Falerno del Massico DOC is also a hilly region a little further north. These two regions produce some of the best Falanghina.
DOC stands for Denominazione di Origine Controllata, which is similar to our American Viticulture Areas (AVAs), but stricter. To be a DOC, not only means the grapes have to be grown in that region, but producers must adhere to additional standards as to the types of grapes allowed in that region, how the grapes must be farmed and how the wine must be made.
Think of this as a guarantee the wines meet a certain standard. It doesn’t mean that some non-DOC wines aren’t good, but if you rather not take a risk look for this label on Italian wines (to learn more about this check-out our MC Winecast with the Italian Wine Girl, Laura Donadoni here (Season 4 Episode 1).
Most of the Falanghina you’ll find in the United States will be dry and still, but they’re produced sweet and sparkling too. These are also wallet friendly wines, as you can find good quality bottles under $20 per bottle. One of our favorites we find at our local Whole Foods is the Feudi di San Gregorio Falangina del Sannio.
Uncork a bottle from your local shop, prep a Margherita pizza, roll out the red-checkered tablecloth and cue the Bocelli—savor the evening in Italy!