Falanghina is an ancient species of grape that has been used to make Italian wines since the times of ancient Rome. According to those in the know, Roman merchants brought the Falanghina grape from Greece to Italy. It is thought to be the key grape in the ancient wine Falernum or Flaernian, a wine that was a favorite of the Roman upper classes 2000 years ago.
The Falanghina grape and the wine produced from it are particularly popular in the central and southern part of Italy. Good water was difficult to find in ancient Rome, so wine became a less risky and more pleasurable alternative to water.
Falanghina is enjoying a rebirth as those of us who appreciate good food and good wines search for foods and food products made with locally grown products using traditional methods. Okay, so you could make the argument that Falanghina was originally produced in Greece and is therefore not local to Italy, but hey that was a long time ago.
Today Falanghina is grown on the shores of Campania, south of Naples in southern Italy. Sant’Agata dei Goti holds a fair dedicated to Falanghina each year at the end of September. Wine growers and consumers are able to participate in wine tastings and lectures.
Falanghina is a full-bodied white wine with a delicate nose. Some people compare this Italian wine to a Pinot Grigio. Drink this wine with grilled or fried fish or pasta made with seafood. Better yet, enjoy this Italian wine as those on the Amalfi Coast of Italy do, with a nice insalata caprese.
Italian Wine Classification: IGP (Indicazione Geografica Protetta-Protected Geographical Indication)
Wine Color: Straw yellow with greenish tints
Italian Region of Production: Campania (Campi Flegrei and Sannio)
Minimum Alcohol Content: 12-12.5%