Southern Italy

Free tasting | Friday, September 22, 2017 | 5-7PM

Southern Italian Wines w/ Mucci Imports

Allora…Andiamo in Italia! Let’s travel to Southern Italia together – from Logan Airport to Roma Fiumicino Aeorporto, hop into our rental Fiat 500, make like Speed Racer for 301 kilometers (187 miles) and…Eccoci qua! Ci siamo arrivati in Campania! We have arrived in Campania! 
Our journey begins at Casa di Baal. The Salerno family makes certified organic wine and olive oil in the foothills of Campania. Annibale (pictured above) has been bottling olive oil for over 50 years on top of raising five kids! His children now run Casa di Baal vineyards and winery, growing mainly the Aglianico and Fiano grape varieties, with smaller plantings of Barbera, Malvasia and Moscato.
Casa di Baal ‘Oro di Baal’ (NV) – Campania, $28
The Salerno family’s ‘Oro di Baal’ is a 100% Fiano sparkling wine made in méthod champenoise. Its bubbles have a finesse and lingering pop just like your favorite Champagne! It’s slightly salty, lemony, bright, and full-bodied, thanks to 18-months on its lees and yeast sediment. It’s pure joy!
Aglianico di Baal (2012) – Campania, $24
This Aglianico is as red as roses with wild notes of anise and baking spices. Earthy dishes like mushroom ravioli sprinkled with Moliterno al Tartufo sheep’s milk cheese is the ultimate pairing. The wine is medium-bodied with great acid and freshness. An Aglianico ready to drink now!
Read more about Casa di Baal here!
Now let’s jump back into our trusty Fiat 500, rocket through the hills of Campania, through the Aspromonte national park of Calabria, and jump on the ferry from Reggio to Messina in Sicily. From Messina, let’s upgrade to a modest rental (Alfa Romeo 155 Q4, perhaps?) and zoom to Mt. Etna where we arrive at Cantine Valenti. Phew, che viaggio! What a trip - we need a bottle of wine!
Giovanni Valenti and his son Alessandro started Cantine Valenti in 2004. Their 50-year old vines are located at one of the highest elevations for growing vines on Mt. Etna. The Valenti family is adamant about exercising organic practices, using only the tiniest amounts of sulfites in their wine, and avoiding all chemicals and herbicides. The entire Valenti clan is a huge fan of the arts, and the wines are named after some of their favorite operas and authors.
Read more about Cantine Valenti here!
Cantine Valenti ‘Enrico IV’ Bianco (2015) – Sicily, $27
‘Enrico IV,’ or ‘Henry IV,’ is an Italian play that was written by Luigi Pirandello in 1921. This white wine is 100% Carricante with aromas of grapefruit, mint, mango, and passion fruit. Even though ‘Enrico IV’ has incredible aging potential, it is also ready to drink now, with springing bone-dry acidity.
Cantine Valenti ‘Poesia’ Rosato (2015) – Sicily, $22
Poesia, ‘Poetry’, is a balanced and bright rosé – it dances on your palate with strawberry notes and mineral drive from the unrivalled Mt. Etna terrior.
Cantine Valenti ‘Norma’ Rosso (2013) – Sicily, $24
‘Norma’ is a staff favorite here at the shop, and named after a Vincenzo Bellini opera. This red blend, made from the Nerello Mascalese and Nerello Cappuccio grapes, explodes with aromas of earth, pepper and violets. It drinks dry and fresh, with a robust finish. Think Burgundy on Etna. It’s some serious juice!
The journey is never over! The incredible producers that Mucci Imports works with allow us all to travel to Italy whenever we want! Just open the bottle, grab some cheese and salumi, take a sip of Campania and Sicily, and we’ll help bring Italy to you! A domani! See you tomorrow!

WineThe Cheese Shop Of Salem