The Falanghina Sabbia Vulcanica IGT Campania 2013 from Agnanum has finally arrived in SF. Up to two years ago, this wine had no label and was only sold to friends and restaurants in Naples. After tasting it, I advised Raffaele to create an IGT Campania so that I could bring it all the way to SF. I can now share it with my customers.
It’s a blend of Falanghina (65%), Catalanesca (20%), Moscato (10%), and the remaining 5% is a mix of Gelsomina, Caprettone, and Biancolella. All in steel. Supercool wine full of citrus, smoke, and creaminess. The alcohol level is 12%.
The name Sabbia Vulcanica means “Vulcanic Sand”. There are 4 main layers of soils at Agnanum and they are all of Vulcanic origin. The very first layer is composed of a very fine sand that almost feels like talcum powder. It dries extremely well. The second layer is composed of pomice stone and lapilli. These stones come from the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 1944. The third layer is basaltic rock and this is where the roots start to go in lateral way.The fourth layer is pozzolana and this is where the roots stop. We are at 4mt below the ground. This layers are responsible for the beautiful smocky minerality we find in the flavor profile of this wine.
In the last a couple of years we have seen very warm Autumns and summers with rain in Campania. This is a big issue in areas like Irpinia around Avellino or in the Sannio zone around Benevento where soils are to humid and this brings vine diseases like Peronospera for example. But here in Campi Flegrei having a summer with rain and a warm October and November is ideal. Soils dry well and they don’t fear water. Alcohol levels stay in check and Autumn heat helps with perfect ripeness.
A bit of info on the lesser known grapes that Raffaele has in vineyards besides the Falanghina which is the king of white grapes here. Some of the vines are 200 years old and Raffaele would never extirpate them in favor of more productive and lucrative Falanghina vines.
CATALANESCA: It was brought from Catalunia in Spain in the 15th century and planted on Mount Vesuvius. It’s a delicate grape not as wild as Falanghina. The grapes are large and beautiful. It brings body and structure to the mix.
GELSOMINA: Also known as Uva Cupella. The vine is very productive and takes a lot of space in the vineyard. Gelsomina brings acidity and freshness to the mix.
CAPRETTONE: Grown mainly on Mt Vesuvius national park, it is has vigorous vine that is quite productive. It adds body to the mix and discrete amount of acidity.
BIANCOLELLA: This is a grape that originates on the island of Ischia. It is prone to rot and it ripens early. Raffaele is not a huge fan since he loses most of it because it is so delicate. “It’s an old vine planted by my grandfather and I just don’t want to get rid of it”.
The cost of this awesome blend is $15 per btl + tax. Email us at Scuoladivino@gmail.com for more information. If you live in SF, you can pick up the wine you purchase directly at our warehouse in Daly City and avoid shipping expenses. We are conveniently located just 3 minutes off the US 101 south taking the Cow Palace/Third Street Exit.