Basilicata in the south of Italy is one of the traditional wine-growing regions, but is less well known outside the country. Embark on a voyage of discovery.
Basilicata: Wine has been grown here for 2500 years.
Wine was already being grown in Basilicata before the Romans conquered all of Italy and then the Mediterranean. It was Phoenicians and Greeks who brought viticulture to southern Italy. The red variety Aglianico was probably already cultivated here in the 6th century BC.
Location and structure of the Basilicata wine region
The Basilicata wine region is located in the south of Italy, figuratively speaking on the sole of the Italian boot. The terrain is dominated by the foothills of the Apennines. In the south the region borders on the Ionian Sea. To the west it has a short stretch of coast on the Tyrrhenian Sea.
In the north-west, Campania joins Basilicata. To the east is Puglia and to the southwest Calabria. Despite its southern position, the mountainous region is cooler than most other areas of Italy. This means a prolonged ripening cycle for the vines, with a late grape harvesting period for Italy lasting until the end of October.
Politically, the region is divided into two provinces: the smaller Matera in the south-east and the larger Potenza, which covers the rest of the area. Most of the wine production is concentrated in the coastal areas of the Ionian Sea, the provincial capital of Matera of the same name, and in the area around the Vulture, an extinct volcano in the province of Potenza. The soil of volcanic origin creates very good conditions for vine growing. Especially the red main variety Aglianico finds ideal growing conditions here.
Characteristics of viticulture in the region
Basilicata's viticulture is characterised by great diversity and a very small-scale structure. Many plots of land cover only one hectare and sometimes even less. Here, viticulture is often a secondary occupation. The heterogeneity and small-scale structure is also the reason why there are only a few designated DOC and DOCG areas in Basilicata.
It is difficult to find coherent areas with a uniform character. In terms of cultivation, winegrowers still rely predominantly on classical cultivation on stilts. Modern vine cultivation on wire frame systems is hardly ever used. Many wine experts see the traditional method as one of the secrets behind the best wines of the region.
Basilicata wine region
Basilicata is a mountainous Italian wine region in the southern Mezzogiorno. Viticulture is concentrated on red wine, which accounts for over 90 percent of the total volume. Due to the altitude, the climate is cool despite the strong sun, so that the grapes can ripen for a long time. During this process, they gain sugar without losing acidity, which benefits the quality of the wine. The best known variety is the red Aglianico. It can benefit particularly from the climatic conditions and also from the classic vine training on the stake in Basilicata.
Red and white grape varieties in Basilicata
In the Basilicata wine region, mainly red grape varieties are cultivated. The most important of these varieties is Aglianico. It has a considerable age even for the traditional Mediterranean region and was already cultivated in Italy 2,500 years ago. Via Greek colonies in today's Calabria, the variety reached Basilicata as well as Puglia and Campania.
The Aglianico produces full-bodied red wines with a fruity character and a multi-faceted acid profile. Other red varieties grown include the autochthonous Bombino Nero, the Ciliegiolo, which is widespread in southern Italy, and the Malvasia Nera di Basilicata. International varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot can also be found to a lesser extent in the vineyards of the region.
White wine plays a smaller role in the region's viticulture, accounting for less than 10% of production. Among the white grape varieties cultivated are the autochthonous Bombino Bianco, Fiano and Greco Bianco and Malvasia Bianca di Basilicata. In addition, Muscat Blanc or Yellow Muscat and Trebbiano are also cultivated.
Wine from Basilicata at VINELLO
Many people are still completely unfamiliar with wines from Basilicata. So if you love Italian wine, here you have the opportunity to discover real new territory. In particular, we recommend that you taste the red dry DOC wines from Aglianico, which are characteristic of the region. These include, for example, the wines from the Vigneti Del Vulture winery such as the Piano del Cerro Aglianico del Vulture DOC or the Pipoli Aglianico del Vulture DOC.
Another recommendable Aglianico is the elegant Titolo Aglianico del Vulture DOC from the Elena Fucci winery. If you prefer a white wine, take a look at the light summer wine Pipoli Greco Fiano IGT made from the Fiano and Greco Bianco grape varieties.
Things to know about Basilicata
Which Basilicata wine has DOC or DOCG status?
Only one DOCG wine is grown in Basilicata: Aglianico del Vulture Superiore. Four areas have DOC status: Aglianico del Vulture, Terre dell'Alta Val d'Agri, Matera and Grottino di Roccanova.
What is the area under vines in the Basilicata wine region?
In Basilicata, wine is grown on a vineyard area of around 11,000 hectares. This makes the wine region one of the smallest in Italy.
How much wine is produced per year in Basilicata?
The Basilicata wine region produces about 80,000 hectolitres of wine per year.
Buy Basilicata wines online at VINELLO
We would like to invite you to try the popular wines from Basilicata. Browse through our offer to your heart's content and find your new favourite wine at VINELLO today. We are proud to present you a wide range of wines from all over the world.
We attach great importance to the satisfaction of our customers. Therefore we guarantee that your purchase with us is safe. We also stand for fast delivery, so that your requested package reaches you without long waiting times. Please feel free to ask our sommeliers for advice - we will be happy to help you!