Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

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Taurasi, full-bodied red from campania produced from the distinctive aglianico grape grown on 1,000 ha/2,470 acres of vineyards in a zone north east of the city of Avellino. The wine has such high levels of acidity and tannins that it demands bottle ageing, which is why it is regularly referred to as ‘the Barolo of the south’. Taurasi demonstrates the heights which Aglianico can reach in the volcanic soil which it favours (see also aglianico del vulture, produced in basilicata to the east). A total of 17 villages on both sides of the River Calore in the province of Irpinia form the Taurasi docg. This hilly terrain has a multitude of different soil types, elevations, and exposures. The left bank of the river with full southern exposition is the warmest part of the zone while the west-facing slopes have a more continental climate. In the central valley on the right bank, on calcareous soils with rock fragments, a cooler macroclimate prevails. On the southern slopes vines are planted as high 700 m (2,300 ft), harvest can be as late as November, and the wines are marked by higher acidity. DOCG regulations require three years of ageing, one of which must be in wood, and riserva bottlings must be aged for four years.