The Falanghina grape is traced back to the Italian countryside in the 7th century B.C. The term Falanghina is derived from the Latin “falangae,” meaning the stake used to support grapevines. The grape was especially popular during the Roman era-definitely the peak of Falanghina’s success.
As the Roman era declined, so did the use and praise of this wine. It became vastly unpopular because at the time it was regarded as dull, flat, and unperfumed in comparison to the up-and-coming acidic whites and bold reds. But the 20th century brought modern vineyards and better winemaking techniques and have in turn transformed this once-shunned grape.
Because of innovative technology, a newfound beautiful fragrance and vibrant orange-peel inflection has been cultivated in Falanghina since the 20th century. The rebirth of Falanghina has ushered in a new appreciation for a full, fruity white wine.
Most Falanghina vines are cultivated on breezy, cool shoreline hills. This climate helps extend the ripening period for these grapes. Centuries ago, these winds blew volcanic ash over the Italian vineyards, creating incredibly mineral-rich soils for these vines to thrive in. These same soil conditions are also found in revived Falanghina vineyards today.
Parents & Origin: Of Greek origin and maybe the grape variety behind Falernian, the most famous wine of Roman antiquity
Notable Regions: Campania, Southern Italy
There is a little grown in Puglia and Abruzzo, but as yet no international production.
Grape: Italian variety of white-wine grapes, Vitis vinifera
Flavors: lemon, citrus blossom, peach, honey, almond
How to Serve Falanghina
Falanghina Serving Temperature
Wine Glass for Falanghina
How Long to Decant Falanghina
How Long to Age Falanghina
Notable Flavors: Lemon, Citrus Blossom, Peach, Honey, Almond
A unique aspect of Falanghina aging is that modern technology and techniques have allowed winemakers to fine-tune flavors. During aging, most Falanghina are kept in stainless steel vessels. This allows the fragrant aromatic flavors to be trapped and locked in, instead of coming into contact with tannins found in wood. Other winemakers have chosen to make a conscious effort to bottle Falanghina as a single varietal, so as to retain a pure flavor.
The Falanghina wines today are known for their fresh, aromatic qualities. Falanghina wines today are also much more subtle than their ancient relatives. When tasting, you’ll enjoy substantial body and richness from this varietal, as well as a soft, delicate blend of floral and honeyed flavors.
Another thing you’ll notice about Falanghina is that there is a sense of balance across all qualities in every sip. The lemon, citrus, and peach flavors are elegantly countered by its acidity, giving a moderate consistency from start to finish.
For delicious Falanghina straight from Italy, shop Martha Stewart White Wine.
Popular Falanghina Regions
Campania is the capital of Naples, Italy. Known for its Neapolitan pizza (some say the best pizza in the world!) and other Italian staples. Look here for desserts like Torta Caprese and Sfogliatella. Campania also boasts of amazing fried foods. Fried zucchini blossoms or stuffed calamari.
Food Pairings for Falanghina
Enjoy Falanghina slightly chilled, between 45-55 Fahrenheit. This temperature range tends to preserve the freshness and fruitiness of white wines the best.
Seafood is Falanghina’s best friend. The medium acidity and dry sweetness complement seafood flavors like scallops, clams, shrimp, or shellfish perfectly. Tomatoes in general pair nicely with Falanghina, such as tomatoes baked with marjoram, parsley and breadcrumbs. More Neapolitan style dishes, like spaghetti with fresh tomatoes, pesto sauce, garlic and herbs make for a delicious entree to enjoy with this white.
Feta, Gouda, dry Jack, and Havarti
Tomatoes - try baked in breadcrumbs!
Garlic and herb-based dishes
AVOID These Pairings
Heavy red meats or heavy cheese like goat cheese would not be a good balance for this white.
- A light pesto pasta
- Garlic and herb scallops
- Linguine and clams in fresh parsley
If you’re looking for a wine that embodies a delicate, fruity white wine, look no further than Falanghina. With a floral and tropical opening and a peachy palate, this wine tastes delicious while still maintaining its mineral qualities and refreshing acidity. All in all, this lovely straw-yellow wine makes for a pleasant drinking experience that begs you to enjoy just one more glass.
Don’t forget to shop Martha Stewart White Wine for some of the best Falanghina!