Italian Indigenous Varieties: Fiano Bianco

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This week we will again be looking at another great white grape variety from Campania – Fiano bianco. This is a very antique variety that existed during Roman times and is said to come from the area around Avellino. An old friend hails from that city and he was quite the “cavaliere” (a man who is chivalrous) in the best sense of the term and that image of certain people and grape varieties remains in my mind.

Fiano grows best in volcanic soils. It produces wines with distinct minerality, good acidity and aromas and flavors of fruit, flowers and nuts. While it is usually vinified into dry wine, it can also be used in the production of late harvest or sweet wines. It grows in both Campania and Puglia.

This white grape variety is often blended with other indigenous varieties such as Greco, Trebbiano and Coda di Volpe in the denominazione d’origine controllata (D.O.C.) wines. It is also often made into a monovarietal wine, Fiano d’Avellino became a denominazione d’origine controllata e garantita (D.O.C.G.) in 2003.

Fiano is a great wine for the summer, fall and spring. I also like it in winter if I am having something to eat which calls for a full-bodied wine. Insomma, a very versatile wine. If you don’t know the grape, you should make a point of getting familiar with this very ancient variety.

One comment

  1. Reblogged this on avvinare and commented:

    I spoke about Fiano today on my Morning Grape series on Instagram. Since I wrote this post, I have visited Irpinia but not the city of Avellino. Still missing that experience. Fiano is a wonderful grape and since I wrote this, I have had many wonderful Fiano wines from producers such as Donnachiara, Tenuta Sarno, Cantina di Marzo, Azienda Petilia and others. Truly marvelous wines and ones that are great for laying down. What I have learned in the intervening years is just how wonderful these wines are with some age on them. Therefore, grab a bottle of Fiano d’Avellino, no grab 4 and lay them down for different periods of time and see how they age. Cheers to all.

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