One of my favorite terroir-minded producers from the area around Naples is La Sibilla, a winery owned and operated by 5 generations of the Di Meo family. I love Southern Italian wines, especially from Campania. This is where you can go deep into Italy’s history, and uncover the really authentic, time-tested grape varietals. More importantly, you’ll also find winemakers here like La Sibilla who love and respect these local grapes, and with them continue to craft elegant and authentic wines. Volcanic ash dominates the soil, the sea surrounds the vineyards and the local viticultural practices all combine to highlight what makes these wines special: salt and acidity.
I became enthralled by the La Sibilla wines after having found them in California, thanks to Oliver McCrum, Italian Wine Importer Extraordinaire. Rule of thumb if you love Italian wines- get to know your importers. If you find one whose palate you appreciate, you’ll likely enjoy most of their wines. For me, Oliver McCrum is a great example. I will buy anything they import!
I really love Falanghina, and the original version from La Sibilla is truly special. As Oliver says on his site, “This is an excellent seafood wine. I also drink it as a dry aperitif, with olives and salami, while deciding what to make for dinner.”
Basically, you should never be without a bottle of this wine in your fridge!
I also found a beautiful 2-minute video created by Farm+Cellar, an amazing marketing group dedicated to wine and agricultural endeavors. These vidoes are truly the next best thing to actually walking the vineyards with these producers. Watch this– if only just to see what a 100-year-old Falanghina vine tree looks like…
I was already enchanted by these wines, but now I am also in love with Vincenzo Di Meo, his sun-drenched vineyards, his adorable accent, and his beautiful family. Even at such a young age his philosophy is wise beyond years, “I am 24. She [the vine] is 100. I cannot change her. I can only take the best she can give to me.” Now that’s some wine-making I can get behind.