Campania tasting reports: the best reds and whites to try

Here are the best white and red wines from the Campania region in 2024, as tasted by Raffaele Mosca at the Campania Stories event in May 2024.

THE WHITE WINES

Five stars ****

Cantine dell’Angelo – Greco di Tufo Miniere 2022

The vineyard lie right above a sulphur mine and the wine has an hypnotizing smoky allure,with intense whiffs of flint and ash over roasted almonds, white pepper, dried herbs, and lemon pith. Youthfully austere and tightly-wound, it may not be the fruitiest Greco but the combination of invigorating acids, palate-cleansing salinity and an almost viscous structure is absolutely knockout. It finishes long and energetic, with resonating smoky and spicy nuances. Fermentation occurs spontaneously, and the wine is aged in stainless steel for about a year. 

Importers and retailers: Kermit Lynch / Portovino (United States)

I Favati – Fiano di Avellino Pietramara Etichetta Bianca 2022

Youthfully reticent yet attractive aromas of iodine, smoke, white pepper, a leafy touch and some richer nuances of saffron and lanolin in the background. Almost Chablis-like on the palate, a leesy touch smoothens the super-bright acids and minerals to the core, while ginger, nectarine and a whiff of gasoline linger on the long and multifaceted finish. 

Importers and retailers: Vinity Wine Company (United States) / People’s Wine (UK) 

Vadiaperti – Fiano di Avellino Aipierti 2020

Hailing from vineyards lying 400 meters above sea level in the town of Montefredane, this has an elegant nose of honeydew melon, jasmine and williams pear with some nutty undertones, and a balsamic edge. Laser-like acidity underpins the seductive core of moderately ripe orchard fruits, while flinty touches complicate the vibrant, minerally and charmingly floral finish. An extraordinarily refined Fiano from one of the pioneers of quality Campanian wine. 

Importers and retailers: North Berkeley Imports (United States) 

Di Meo – Fiano di Avellino Colle dei Cerri 2008

After almost fifteen years on the lees, this aged Fiano displays attractive tertiary notes of porcini mushrooms, tobacco and hay mingling with saffron, white pepper and almost peat-like smokiness. Quince and an earthy touch appear on the entry but the acidity is ultra-refreshing and mounting minerals add to the energy of the ample progression, which finishes long and savory. 

Importers and retailers: Leone Alato USA (United States) / 

Four stars plus **** +

Alois – Terre del Volturno Pallagrello Bianco Morrone 2022 

Delicate and polished, focusing on elegance rather than intense, peach skin and lemon pith mingle with dried herbs, smoke, and a nutty touch. Pallagrello Bianco is always grippy, tactile and broad but this wine also shows lovely acidic lift and minerally touches that extend the multilayered finish. Aging occurred in oak but it’s devoid of any oak imprinting. 

Importers and retailers: Chambers & Chambers / Soilair Selection (United States) / Passione Vino (UK) 

Cantine Astroni – Falanghina dei Campi Flegrei Vigne Astroni 2022

A deep straw color with golden hues anticipates an intriguing nose focusing on smoky minerals and tangy herbs, with some sweeter touches of yellow plum and marzipan in the background. It evokes the volcanic terroir through a captivating mix of spicy, saline and smoky flavors that linger on a zingy and tactile finish. A textbook wine from Campi Flegrei.  

Importers and retailers: Verity Wine Partners / Pure Italian LLC ( United States)

Pietracupa – Campania Greco 2022

Golden apple, acacia honey, iodine and a flinty make for a well-delineated nose, with a subtle touch of quince adding a bit of oxidative complexity. Ample and multilayered, with a lovely core of orchard fruits lifted by invigorating acids and a savory zing, the finish is long and enticingly smoky. A lovely Greco from a benchmark producer. 

Importers and retailers: Astrum Wine Cellars (UK) 

Colli di Lapio – Fiano di Avellino 2023 

Lapio is one of the highest and coldest townships where Fiano is grown, and this textbook expression of place is decidedly elegant: charming florals mingle with hazelnut, lemon zest and a balsamic touch, anticipating a suave and energetic mouthfeel. Piercing acids lift the mid-weight core of stone fruits, fading slightly in a floral and slightly flinty finish. Even better in two to four years.

Importers and retailers: Skurnik Wines (United States) / Domaine Selections (Canada) 

Casa Setaro – Vesuvio Bianco Contrade 61.37 2022

A single-varietal Caprettone from the slopes of Mount Vesuvius, this shows a baroque nose with light oxidative touches of quince and acacia honey underlying diesel fuel, white pepper, and hay. You get signature salinity allied to sweet orchard fruits and lemon pith, and a subtle tactile touch that adds to the depth and liveliness of the extremely characterful and moreish progression.

Importers and retailers: Rosenthal Wine Merchant (United States) / Sapori d’ Italia (New Zealand) / Campania Wines Limited (UK) 

Four stars ****

Benito Ferrara – Greco di Tufo Vigna Cicogna 2022

A benchmark Greco di Tufo, Vigna Cicogna expresses the lighter and more delicate side of the grape, displaying immediately-pleasing aromas of golden apple, honeydew melon, jasmine, balsam herbs, and a hint of orange blossom. Savory minerals gain prominence on the palate, balancing the rich and luscious fruit structure and echoing a medium-long finish. Less complex than the really top Greco but strikingly balanced. 

Importers and retailers: Marc de Grazia Selections (United States) / Petersham Cellars (UK) 

Tempa di Zoè – Cilento Fiano Xa 2022 

A varietal Fiano from three different vineyards on the coast of Cilento, Xa undergoes brief aging in oak. Slightly riper than most Fiano from Irpinia, it displays intriguing hints of anchovy paste that complicate candied lemon peel, wild fennel, and super-ripe nectarine. Broad and textural, a subtle whiff of oak spice frames the seductively ripe orchard fruits to the core, while savory echoes and tangy herbs resonate on a medium-long, slightly almondy finish. 

Importers and retailers: Artisanal Cellars (United States) / Campania Wines Limited (UK) 

Mustilli – Falanghina del Sannio Sant’Agata dei Goti Vigna Segreta 2022 

The single-vineyard Falanghina by the family that produced the first varietal wine from this grape in 1976, Vigna Segreta is more complex and less obviously herbal or floral than most Falanghina you’ll come across. Lemon peel, botanical herbs and a flinty touch anticipate a crisp and linear palate with zippy acidity upfront, followed by smoother flavors of nectarine and a clear-cut, smoke-inflected inflected finish. Better in two years. 

Importers and retailers: Tricolore Imports (United States) / Allegro Fine Wines (Singapore)

Vitematta – Aversa Asprinio Metodo Classico Dosaggio Zero Principe 2021 

Bright and inviting with hawthorn, smoked almonds, lemon peel, and a whiff of gasoline. Slightly rustic but crisp and refreshing, a frothy mousse lifts a lightweight progression with a herbal and zippy finish. 

Importers and retailers: — 

Ettore Sammarco – Costa d’Amalfi Bianco Selva delle Monache 2023 

Undergoing brief aging in stainless steel, the aromas of broom flowers, Amalfi lemons and Mediterranean herbs scream coastal terroir. Similar aromas echo on a seductively smooth palate, with just enough acidity to ensure a mouth-cleansing effect and a saline tang that extends the perfumed finish. Mostly Biancolella with a dollop of Falanghina. 

Importers and retailers: GMD Imports (United States) 

THE RED WINES

Four stars plus **** +

Agnanum – Piedirosso dei Campi Flegrei 2023

An irresistible glou-glou wine with intoxicating aromas of strawberries, rose petals and pink pepper wrapped in a veil of volcanic ash. Juicy and easygoing, with mouthwatering saline backing the sucrose red fruits, it’s the kind of red you can easily drink slightly chilled during warm summer days.

Importers and retailers: Louis Dressner (United States) 

Tenuta Cavalier Pepe – Taurasi Le Logge del Cavaliere 2016

Deep and dark aromas of quinine, botanical herbs, charcoal, crunchy bramble fruits, and a whiff of spicy oak. Tightly-wound yet without any grittiness, imposing tannins complement succulent black fruits, while balsamic echoes extend a long and clear-cut finish. Aging occurred in a mix of small and large French oak. 

Importers and retailers: 30.50 Imports / Beivuma Selections (United States) 

Perillo – Taurasi 2013 

Perillo is known for letting his Taurasi rest in cellar for longer than anybody else but the 2013 is still far from being approachable. A dark and moody nose of crunchy blackberries, animal musk, licorice and botanical herbs anticipates a muscular palate with searing tannins upfront, followed by smoothing dark fruits and complicating animal and balsamic nuances. It just requires a little more time to achieve optimal balance. 

Importers and retailers: Oliver McCrum (United States) 

Four stars ****

Fattoria La Rivolta – Aglianico del Taburno 2020

Varietally accurate aromas of dark cherries, quinine, black pepper and undergrowth anticipate an equally linear palate with loads of juicy red fruits on a bed pinpoints tannins. Refreshing acidity complements the moreish, making for a relatively simple yet poised expression of Aglianico that will drink well with minimal cellaring. 

Importers and retailers: Thoman Hunt (UK) 

Monserrato 1973 – Barbera del Sannio Vintage 2022

Fermented in stainless steel and aged in anfora, this has a pretty nose of strawberries, rose petals and licorice with some florals and hints in the background. Saline on the entry, it then turns smoother, with loads of syrupy red fruits allied to a spicy tang, making for a deliciously easy-going progression. Pair it with charcuterie or fish soup. 

Importers and retailers: Mise Wine (United States) 

Cantine Olivella –  Vesuvio Rosso Vipt 2022

This single-variety Piedirosso from Vesuvio has an intoxicating nose of blood orange, redcurrant, rose petals, and dried herbs. It flows on the palate with great elegance – juicy and slim, an invigorating saline backs the red-fruited progression, echoing on the suave and perfumed finish. Whole-bunch fermented. 

Importers and retailers: —

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