Fiano: Quick Guide

what's fiano wine taste like - fiano wine infographic

Pronunciation: fee-AH-no

Fiano is a white wine grape originating from Southern Italy, particularly Campania. It’s known for its aromatic qualities and is often crafted into both varietal and blended wines, offering a distinct profile with notes of citrus, honey, and floral undertones.

What Kind of Wine Is Fiano?

Fiano is a light to medium bodied white wine with lively acidity, a characteristic floral nose, and a diverse flavor profile encompassing citrus, honey, and a subtle minerality. Its style places it between the richness of Chardonnay and the crispness of Sauvignon Blanc.

Where Does Fiano Wine Come From?

Originating in Campania, Southern Italy, Fiano has deep roots in the region’s winemaking traditions. It is primarily cultivated in the Avellino province, producing exceptional varietal wines. Fiano also plays a key role in the renowned blended wine, Fiano di Avellino DOCG.

Fiano in Campania

In Campania, Fiano thrives in the volcanic soils, creating wines with vibrant acidity and a unique combination of floral and citrus notes. The Fiano di Avellino DOCG showcases the grape’s potential for crafting high-quality, age-worthy white wines.

Helpful Wine Buying Tip: Look for wines with the Fiano di Avellino DOCG designation for a classic Fiano experience.

Fiano Around the World

Beyond Italy, Fiano has gained recognition in other wine regions. In Australia, particularly in the McLaren Vale and Adelaide Hills, Fiano has found a second home. Australian Fiano wines are celebrated for their aromatic complexity and refreshing acidity.

Fiano’s Aromatic Profile

Fiano is distinguished by its aromatic intensity, offering notes of citrus, particularly lemon and grapefruit, intertwined with hints of honey and white flowers. The grape’s adaptability to different climates results in varying expressions of its aromatic profile.

Fun Wine Fact: Fiano has a long history in the world of wine, going back to ancient Roman times.

What Does Fiano Taste Like?

Fiano’s flavor profile ranges from zesty citrus to luscious honey. Over time, that honey will transform into spice. Well-made Fiano has weight on the palate with floral notes.

Is Fiano a Heavy Wine?

Fiano typically falls in the medium to full-bodied category. While it can exhibit richness, the wine maintains a balanced structure.

How to Serve Fiano Wine

how to serve fiano wine

Temperature

Serve Fiano chilled but not overly cold, around 45-50°F (7-10°C). This preserves the wine’s aromatic qualities while maintaining a refreshing temperature.

Glassware

Opt for a medium-sized white wine glass with a slightly tapered rim. This shape enhances the aromas, allowing the floral and citrus notes to shine.

Decanting

Fiano generally doesn’t require decanting. However, for more complex or aged Fiano, a brief decanting of 10-15 minutes can enhance its aromas and flavors.

Aging Potential

Fiano has a moderate aging potential. Enjoy younger expressions for their vibrant freshness, while well-structured Fiano wines can evolve beautifully over 3-5 years.

Personal Note: I wouldn’t age a Fiano wine. The ones that I can buy in my market are drink-now kind of wines.

Fiano Synonyms

Apiana, Apiano, Fiana, Fiano di Avellino, Fiore Mendillo, Foiano, Latina Bianca, Latina Bianca di Barletta, Latino, Latino Bianco, Minutola, Minutolo, and Santa Sofia.

Fiano Food Pairing Suggestions

fiano wine - chicken

Fiano’s versatility makes it an excellent pairing for a range of dishes. Embrace its citrus and floral notes by pairing it with:

  • Grilled lemon herb chicken
  • Shrimp scampi with fresh herbs
  • Caprese salad with ripe tomatoes and basil

What Grapes Are Similar to Fiano?

Wine FeatureFianoChardonnayViognierTrebbiano
SweetnessMedium to Medium-HighDry to Off-DryDry to Off-DryDry to Off-Dry
AcidMedium to HighMedium to HighMedium to HighMedium to High
BodyMedium to FullMedium to FullMedium to FullLight to Medium
Alcohol Average12.5% to 13.5%13% to 14.5%13.5% to 15%11% to 13%
Main Flavors and AromasCitrus, Honey, FloralApple, Citrus, Butter, VanillaPeach, Apricot, Floral, Tropical FruitsCitrus, Green Apple, Herbal
Main RegionsItaly (Campania)Global (Burgundy, California, Australia)France (Condrieu), CaliforniaItaly (Various regions), France
Price Range$$$-$$$$$$$$$

While Fiano shares some characteristics with more familiar white varietals like Chardonnay and Viognier, its unique floral and citrus profile sets it apart. It offers a distinct alternative for those seeking a white wine with a vibrant aromatic character.

Notable Fiano Producers and Bottles to Try

When exploring Fiano, you’ll probably end up in Italy. But if you can find Fiano from Australia or other regions, then give it a try!

Fun Wine Fact: Fiano is a key grape in the production of Vin Santo, a traditional Italian dessert wine.

Emerging Trends and Innovations: Fiano

Fiano has gone through a transformation in winemaking. Up until the past few decades, most Fiano wines were made in an oxidative, nutty style that muted the wine’s freshness. A better understanding of winemaking science means that today Fiano wines express the honeyed aromatics that transform into spice and nuts with time. Lucky us!

Final Thoughts – Fiano as Must-Try White Wine Varietal

If you love fuller bodied Chardonnay wines, then you need to give Fiano a try. With its aromatic allure, diverse flavor spectrum, and aging potential, Fiano deserves a place among must-try white wine varietals.

Thirsty for More?

Check out Vermentino, another of Italy’s famous white wines.

Here’s a fun post to get you started on hosting your own wine tastings at home.

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