10 native Italian varieties worth seeking out
A native grape of Valle d’Aosta, Italy’s smallest region, that only existed in blends as recently as 15 years ago. Today it is considered the red grape of greatest breeding among the region’s natives, yielding wines that are full-bodied and loaded with red berry and smoky flavours. It ages well thanks to notable tannins and lively acidity.
Try: Les Crêtes, La Tour Fumin, Valle d’Aosta 2005
Herbal with leafy reductive aromas, this opens up to reveal pretty strawberry and raspberry flavours. Finishes long and classy. Costantino Charrère of Les Crêtes is one of Italy’s 10 best winemakers, and he essentially brought Fumin back from the near extinction all on his own. Recent vintages are better. 16.5pts/20
Price: £21–£24.99 Les Cave de Pyrène, Slurp, Swig