Wine Lists

Italian reds to try

By Halliday Promotion

31 Mar, 2022

Nebbiolo, nero d’Avola (blended with negroamaro) and sangiovese – here are three Italian red varietals to try.

Italy is responsible for over 500 unique varieties, such as sangiovese, nero d'Avola, nebbiolo and montepulciano, all with distinct character and boldness of flavour. The three wines below are clear examples of Italian reds: nebbiolo from Henschke; a creative blend of nero d’Avola and negroamaro from Santolin Wines; and a sangiovese from Collector Wines. Add them to your list.

2018 Henschke The Rose Grower Nebbiolo

2018 Henschke The Rose Grower Nebbiolo 

Pale garnet with brick red hues. Fragrant aromas of rose-hip, red cherry, cranberry, and red currant with cured meats, aniseed, musk, hints of ginger root, ground nutmeg, and dried thyme. An intense, complex, and supple medium-bodied palate of spicy pureed strawberry, cranberry, raspberry and truffle, with a crisp acid line and long, chalky tannins on the finish. 

Winemaker Stephen Henschke pairs this nebbiolo with Nino Zoccali's (The Restaurant Pendolino) game tortellini with mountain herbs, melted organic butter and game reduction.

RRP $50 | Drink to 2028 |

2018 Santolin Cosa Nostra Il Capo

2018 Santolin Cosa Nostra Il Capo

Cosa Nostra translates from Italian to ‘our thing’ in English, and that’s exactly what this wine is – our thing. A creative, experimental mix of two southern Italian varieties that form our own unique blend. Deep and dark in colour, this wine is medium-bodied on the palate. Juicy notes of mulberry and dark cherry with savoury, earthy undertones. 82% nero d’Avola, 18% negroamaro.

Winemaker Adrian Santolin says this wine is best enjoyed with almost any Italian-inspired dish, but especially with prosciutto pizza on a Friday night.

RRP $25 | Drink to 2025 |

2017 Collector Wines Rose Red City Sangiovese

2017 Collector Wines Rose Red City Sangiovese 

Spiced red currant, mulberry and tobacco yield to a rich palate framed by cherries, hints of tar and firm savoury tannins. The grapes were hand-harvested at around 13 baumé, fermented with natural yeast in open fermenters, which were worked by hand to extract flavour and tannins. The parcels went through natural malolactic fermentation and were then aged in a mix of new and seasoned Allier and Tronçais oak.

Winemaker Alex McKay drinks the Rose Red City with T-bone steak, ragu, meatballs, and pizza. 

RRP $32 | Drink to 2042 |

Learn more about Italian reds in our essential guide.
This article was produced by Halliday Wine Companion in partnership with the featured wineries.
Top image credit: Dragan Radocaj (Henschke)