Thursday, 19 August 2010

The wines of the Amalfi peninsula

One of our favourite book titles is 'The Cheeses of the Amalfi Peninsula', a less slim volume than you might suppose by Carla Capalbo. So it was that on our first visit to the Ravello Festival we were able to check out Tintore in its habitat and check the other producers such as they were.

It turns out that Tintore is most successful in blends, usually with Piedirosso (Per'e Palummo). We visited Tramonti and were impressed by the strange and lonely atmosphere of the area. We were also impressed by the wines of Apicella whose 'a Scippata' riserva (a Tintore/Piedirosso blend) we enjoyed at the Pizzeria Vittoria, Ravello, served by our runner up best Sommelier 2009/10, Maria.

There is also the rare Sciascinoso grape grown in the Tramonti region and by law in only two other areas in Campania. It is valued for the body it gives to blends. Apicella uses it in his Rose. It goes onto the Slotovino wish-list of grapes we would like to try.

These wines may be bought in the various Enoteche with which Ravello itself is blessed and even at Naples Capodichino airport. A word of warning though. Like an archealogical site, a new terminal has been built on top of the old one so understandably passengers buy their Duty Frees in the new Duty Free shop on the same level as the one on which they have checked in and submitted to security control. They might well stay on this level until their flight is called. They would then make their way downstairs only to be confronted, with no time to buy or even windowshop, by an amazing outlet specialising in local produce (mainly wine including those of the Amalfi peninsula and the rest of Campania)

and what must be quite positively the only Airport Duty Free Mozzarella shop in the entire world. Luckily we had time to take a peek at these two excellent establishments and bought a Coda di Volpe called "Leporello".

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