There is a solid reason why southern Italy should be on everyone’s radar. There are a plethora of native grapes that quality-minded producers are crafting wines from. Forget the vast boring wines made from Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, let me tantalize you with Fiano. I like how Joseph Bastianich (restaurateur winemaker and personality) describes Fiano; “ Pesto In A Glass!”
“A single site, single vineyard, single grape” is how Mara Sarno expresses her wines made exclusively from Fiano grapes. Home of the Sarno Family, Tenuta Sarno winery is a private museum in a historic park set in the ancient village, Candida. You too can feel part of history as the main Parlor acts as the tasting room. The name honors the year Maura Sarno’s ancestors first planted vines on the property in 1860.
Since 2004 the Sarno family has been crafting wine made exclusively with Fiano grapes.
( Fiano is a native white grape variety that is grown primarily in southern Italy. It is synonymous with the Campania region. Sometimes on the bottle, it will be labeled Apianum, which is a grape loved by bees. In Avellino where it is most prized, there are many hazelnut plantations, which can explain why wines produced here to impart a flavor and aroma of hazelnuts.)
Teuta Sarno is specifically located in the village Candida of Irpinia district, meaning wolf; that is still present in the territory. The province is Avellino DOCG in the region of Campania of Southern Italy. The Capital is confusingly Avellino and Ariano Iripinia, as everything in Italy. It’s known mostly for agriculture, however, the real star is the cultivation of Fiano grapes.
All the grapes are from the family estate. Hand harvest ensures fresh grapes without bruising or oxidation. In the winery, gentle extraction is applied for the elegance and purity of fruit. The wines are aged in stainless steel along with native yeast and age 8 months for a clean dramatic style.
I like to compare Fiano as a cross between the nose and body of an Alsace Pinot Gris and the flavor profile of Chenin Blanc from Loire Valley. The color is dazzling medium gold
Ripe Anjou pear bruised apple, camomile tea, along with spring flowers, fresh thyme, and pungent oregano, zesty lemon rind and toasty hazelnut
Dry, medium acid, medium+ alcohol, full-body, waxy texture, medium+ intensity with flavors of ripe tree fruit, yellow bruised apples and ripe fresh pears and peach, wet wool, perfumed with honeysuckle and honey, along with savory flavors of green olives fresh herbs. Medium+ finish.
This is a very good wine. It distributes excellent acid throughout, complemented with ripe fruit, the concentration deepens with a mineral core and finishes with bold Briney herbs and bitternut finish. Fiano brings a lot to the table. I didn’t rate this as the most outstanding Fiano for one reason, It needed less time on the vine. However, most Fianos are not meant to age. Still, this wine will not disappoint. Drink it alone, drink it with food, drink it as you desire. Italians don’t like to complicate their wines. Enjoy La Dolce Vita and this wine is no exception. CIAO!
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