Sebastiano de Corato founded Azienda Vinicola Rivera in the early 1950s. His son Carlo continued focusing on Nero di Troia and Montepulciano for the reds but also started experimenting with non-indigenous white grapes such as Chardonnay and Sauvignon. A long period of testing the adaptability of such Northern varieties to torrid Apulia was necessary, but the venture ultimately led to very successful results. The inclusion of such varietals in the Castel del Monte DOC represented an important step for Rivera and for Apulian viticulture as a whole. Carlo's sons, Sebastiano, and recently his brother Marco, have joined their father in the management of the estate. View all Rivera Wines
About Southern ItalyAbruzzi, Puglia, & Campania
AbruzziKind of central, kind of southern, this region is best known for it's wine, Montapulciano d'Abruzzi – this wine is made from the Montelpulciano grape, unlike Vino Nobile di Montelpulciano, made with a Sangiovese clone in the region of Montelpuliciano. The Montelpulciano grape is happiest here in Abruzzi and the wine is rustic, yet soft and often fruity. The best part is that it's also good value and super food-friendly.
PugliaSometimes called Apuglia outside of Italy, the area is known for making wine from the Zinfandel-related Primitivo variety. It sits on the Adriatic coast, facing Greece, and enjoys a Mediterranean climate. A productive wine region, Puglia makes a lot of wine, some of it not so high quality. Luckily, the good wine is exported and is of excellent value.
CampaniaPerhaps better known for the city of Naples than the wine produced, Campania does have a couple of wines worth recognition. First, the white known as Greco di Tufo – an indigenous variety, Greco produces white wine that is dry, with a subtle nutty flavor. The best-known red here is Taurasi, made from the Aglianico grape, producing a wine of distinct color and flavor, with aromas of tar and leather.
A little ditty about Italy...This country has about as many wines as its had governments. With 20 different regions, hundreds of DOCs and even more indigenous varieties, the amount of wine made in Italy is mind-boggling. Most of the juice, however, remains in the country for thirsty Italians. Wine is food in Italy and its rare that a meal is consumed without a glass of vino. That said, it's not common to find many folks drinking wine without food either. In turn, it's a match, and a mighty good one at that. In fact, it's safe to say that Italian wine is a foodie wine – one that goes on the table for a myraid of meals.
For regions, the most popular are Tuscany (home of Chianti), Piedmont and the Tre-Venezie, which includes Veneto, Trentino Alto-Adige and Friuli. Other communes of note are in Southern Italy, and a few good wines are made elsewhere in the country. The islands of Sardinia and Sicily are members of the Italian winemaking community as well.