Campania

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Campania, the Southern Italian region centered on Napoli is the bread basket of the South. Originally settled by the Greeks it features warm sun dappled coastlines teeming with seafood and fertile volcanic soils that are home to fields of the world’s best tomatoes and citrus groves. Not far inland the land rises quickly and you find cool forests of chestnut trees. As you might expect, viticulture in such a place has not always focused on quality. Roman senators and Neapolitan nobles have looked to Campania for juicy table grapes and copious amounts of flavorful wine alike. But the bones of good winemaking have always been here: great biodiversity with grapes like Falanghina, Fiano, and Greco (and that’s just the whites), lots of wonderful microclimates that provide unique terroirs, and most of all a local pride in the produce. Whether it’s established masters like Marisa Cuomo growing vines in terraced cliffside vineyards on the Amalfi coast, or the Favati family making traditional mineral driven reds and whites at the feet of old volcanoes in Irpinia, Campanian winemakers are keeping a connection to history through this incredible land and their amazing indigenous varietals to make wines of a caliber rarely seen in the past. Producers like Bruno De Conciliis and Diana Basca of I Cacciagalli combine old-new techniques like biodynamics and sustainable energy with millennia of traditional growing and a love of gods grapes. It’s a region of diverse selections many of us are discovering for the first time.