Discovering the Food and Wine in Campania
Updated: Nov 17, 2019
Italy is renowned for fine wine throughout the country, but some regions get more attention than others. One area that should not be overlooked is the Taurasi wine appellation in Irpinia. This region is part of Campania, in Southern Italy not far from the Amalfi Coast.
We had the pleasure of learning about the food and wine in Campania on a private gourmet tour with guide Giuseppe, owner of Tasting Campania. This tour caught our eye because it was a bit different, focusing not only on the local wine in Campania but also on the local foods that the region has to offer.
This tour did not disappoint. It was one of the most comprehensive ones we’ve been on.
We had a full tour of the Cantine Antonio Caggiano winery, in the heart of the Taurasi wine region. The family has been making wine there for generations. Winery owner Antonio collects wine-related items, such as centuries-old tools and corkscrews, and he has created a small museum under the winery.
The winery produces three types of red wine using only the native Aglianico grape. It also produces four white wines, one from the Fiano di Avellino grape, one from the Greco di Tufo grape, and two from a combination of Fiano and Greco.
Fiagre 2017, a blend of Fiano and Greco 😊++
Devon 2017, made with Greco, 😊😊
Tauri, made with Aglianico grapes 😊++
Antonio is also an artist. He spoke very little English, but he was extremely outgoing and made every effort to make us feel welcomed. When he saw Jess admiring one of his paintings, he showed us that it was a landscape of his winery’s grounds – and then gave her the painting as a gift.
After our visit, we had a wonderful local farm-to-table lunch at Agrituriso Taurasi. We were served prosciutto, onion soup, bean soup, eggplant, string beans, two pastas, boiled meats, house wine, grappa, and sherry. Yum!
Giuseppe then took us to a tiny winery/store, Sella delle Spine, in the village of Taurasi. We met with Emilio, a sommelier, who taught us about winemaking in the Avelino province and the uniqueness of some of the wine in Campania. For instance, he told us that Taurasi wines have evolved for hundreds of years, making them particularly complex. He also noted that Taurasi wines were unusual because they need to breathe longer than most wines. He said that for each year, you should let it breathe for an hour (so for a 2017 wine being enjoyed in 2019, leave it open two hours).
We tasted the winery’s Taurasi DOCG Vigna Piano D’Angelo 2012 😊😊++, a wonderful red.
We also toured Federico di Iorio, a great family-owned nougat and chocolate factory in operation for centuries, and Ciarcia, a very interesting prosciutto factory.
We were even able to squeeze in a trip to Fam, an olive oil factory, which produces more than 12 different flavors of olive oil, including porcini mushroom, lemon, and parsley.
We had generous tastings in all three places.
We hope you find these suggestions about the food and wine in the Taurasi region of Campania in Southern Italy helpful. Please feel free to send us photos of your experiences in Italy!
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