Home to the third most important and noble grape of Italy: Aglianico one of the most unknown and interesting varietals in Italy. Ask a Southern Italian winemaker which wine varietal fascinates them the most and we guarantee that it will be Aglianico. The quality of the wines of Aglianico del Vulture have finally gained traction around the world and it is certainly merited. The Aglianico del Vulture DOC is accompanied by the Matera DOC and Terre dell'Alta Val d'Agri. With the neighbouring Campania, especially the village of Taurasi, this is where it comes.
Wine makers in Basilicata are thrilled to have us in the region and it is our mission to finally put the wines of Basilicata on the wine tourism map. The wineries of Basilicata are either large cooperatives or small niche high quality wine makers and that is where we have our interest. With any wine tasting in Basilicata, expect real hospitality, outstanding hand crafted wines, welcoming people and some of the best olive oils in Italy.
It is known that the Aglianico grape has been grown in Basilicata since the 6th century BC. There are three theories about its origin; two of them crediting the ancient Greeks with its introduction to Italy. One theory purports that the Greeks planted the grape in their colony of Metaponto on the Basilicata coast where the grape was called ellenico, the Italian word for Hellenic or Greek. Another theory has the Greeks first planting Aglianico in Campania, just north of Naples, and used to make Falernum, a red wine hailed by the Roman writers of that time as one of the best in Rome. A third more recent theory has the Aglianico grape being native to southern Italy. Attilio Scienza of the University of Milan claims the grape grew wild and was enjoyed as early as the Bronze Age by the indigenous peoples. According to Scienza, the Greeks discovered it there and named is eilanikos, which means a vine that grows up trees. While the authentic truth may never be know, we suspect some amount of regional and/or national pride is behind many of these theories.
Naturally Aglianico is the focus on the reds, with Primitivo showing very well close to Matera that makes sense as just a few miles away you are in Puglia. Sangiovese and Montepulciano are interesting imports and the Fiano leads the whites as it is the most typical varietal with Malvasia Bianca and Moscato Bianco. Matera merits a couple of nights in any itinerary and is a great base for us to show you the Vulture, the spectacular town of Venosa, the castle of Melfi and the wine cellars of Barile (UNESCO Heritage Site).
We know most of the wineries in the region, its going to be a struggle for you to find them back home, but here are list of the wines you are more likely to find and the wines we really enjoy, in no way is this exhaustive!
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Musto Carmelitano, Maschito
Serra del Prete ‘08 & ‘09
Pian del Moro ‘08
Via Pietro Nenni, 23 – 85020 Maschito (PZ)