Writing now that Radici del Sud 2018 ended successfully would sound obvious, someone would think “it is the classical sentence used when a festivla ends” but the enthusiasm of international journalists renews regularly.
After all, there are not so frequent or intense opportunities for such a well defined focus on the indigenous grapes of Southern Italy that this year began with the 2 days of competition (read here the winners of the wine challenge as well a the judges that I always joint with great enthusiasm) and related tasting of the individual grape varieties grouped in singular flights before continuing with the press tour (while the buyers were busy with the BtoB meetings). Yet, it is enough to look at the tour organized by Nicola Campanile (organizer of the kermesse) and his staff to understand its value.
radici del sud 2018 – press tour
The festival has been inaugurated with the vertical tasting of the most popular white from Campania region, Greco di Tufo, and specifically that of the young company Sertura (read the article here) that is showing great seriousness and tenacity.
After the first day of competition we are instead guests of the company Coppi in Turi (province of BARI) where in addition to the beautiful and famous local cherries (called “ferrovia” [railway]) we have the opportunity to try typical and ‘secrect’ recipes (althought we tried to ask some info) and, of course, their wines that demonstrate the great growth of this winery over the years.
The third day the wine contest is over and we, the journalists, are hosted at Claudio Quarta’s Tenute Emera (in Lizzano, province of Taranto), which offered a genuine and spontaneous welcome. Alessandra Quarta, daughter of Claudio, is able with her smile to convey a transport that makes me think of a deep internal path. The wines are all aimed at elegance, often to the “delicacy” with peaks of excellence for the reds.
tenute emera di claudio quarta
Then we arrived at Gallipoli (province of Lecce) where we meet the Coppola’s. In addition to the charm of the city, including the oil mill that has enriched the area with its profits, I am impressed by the proud and generous approach of the owners. The Cantina Coppola (1489) has a medium size of 15 hectares (for about 100,000 bottles a year) but the investments in terms of wine tourism are noteworthy, I warmly invite you to take note and visit one of their facilities once in the area. But I dwell, in particular, on one of the tastings that I appreciated most at this 13th edition of Radici del Sud: the vertical tasting of their Negroamaro “Li Cuti” Alezio DOC rosso (it is the only one winery which offers wines under this appelation) which shows great territoriality and truth in the glasses as well a special attention to details starting from the closures themselves that demonstrate, in their variability, a research aimed at the exaltation of the product in itself closely related to the ‘protection’ of quality.
Negroamaro Li Cuti Doc Alezio – Cantine Coppola
That said, I seriously liked all of ther wines starting from the ‘basic’ line that offers an excellent value for money.
Cantine Coppola tour
Afterwards we reached a winery in some way linked to Coppola's one: Duca Carlo Guarini (in Scorrao, province of Lecce) with whom they share the talented winemaker Giuseppe Pizzolante Leuzzi (the
wines speak by themselves): the atmosphere they can offer with a lunch/dinner in their garden is just
garden – Duca Carlo Guarini
From the bubbles of Negroamaro to the Negroamaro white (which is only produced by these 2 wineries) to rosé and red wines, we went onward tasting with growing curiosity, appreciating the ability in managing even the hottest vintages, always finding juicy and “fluid” wines, with a wise use of wood as well as a wonderful courtesy: mirror of the spirit that they pour into those bottles.
tasting at Duca Carlo Guarini
Last and not least as it will be easy to guess, was the stop at Cantina Garofano (in Copertino, province of Lecce) where Renata and Stefano with their usual affability and professionalism surprised us with a vertical tasting of their rosè Girofle, source of numerous reflections too (read the article here).
Here is the brief but dense report of a week dedicated to the typicity, the love for truth and the search for that warm exchange of which the South embodies the most authentic connotations.