A fiano romance: Three bottles to try

Italian grape varieties such as fiano have taken root in McLaren Vale.
Italian grape varieties such as fiano have taken root in McLaren Vale. Photo: MarkPiovesan

Fiano is an ancient native Italian grape widely grown in Campania and other warm, dry parts of southern Italy. It's taken root in many Australian regions for the same reasons. The only wonder is that it took us so long to grow it. McLaren Vale has become perhaps the most prominent source of fiano wines, partly because the grape is suited to the region's climate and soils, and partly because Italian varieties have been welcomed warmly there: many wine families have an Italian background. Fiano is also a great food wine, and if any people are obsessed with wine and food togetherness, it's the Italians.

Maxwell Little Demon Fiano 2021, McLaren Vale $22

Score 90

This wine is a lovely drink, with stylish and quirky new labelling to match. It's very aromatic and has more intensity than most Aussie fianos. The fragrant herb aromas include sweet basil together with pineapple and lemon, while the taste is deep and lasting, with a touch of richness. Superior stuff. Screw-cap; 12 per cent alcohol.

Ageing? Drink now to five years.

Stockists include Liquor Emporium, Marrickville, St Peters & Alexandria (NSW); Wines on Poath, Hughesdale (Vic).

Mino & Co Signor Vino Fiano 2021, Riverina $21

Score 88

Fiano is well-suited to the Riverina's warm climate, as this wine from the Guglielmino family demonstrates. The colour is very light yellow and the aroma presents a pleasant whiff of cedary pencil-wood and apricot; the palate is soft, rounded and full-ish, with almost pulpy generosity on the middle palate. An adaptable early-drinking dry white. Screw-cap; 13 per cent alcohol.

Ageing? Drink now to four years.

Stockists include minoandco.com.au

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Serafino Bellissimo Fiano 2021, McLaren Vale $20-$25

Score 88

McLaren Vale has many growers of Italian origin and Serafino is the winery of the Maglieri family, who make a range of Italian varietals. This fiano has an overt herbal bouquet showing meadow-hay and some yeasty aromas, the palate softer and fuller than most, with texture and amplitude. It's an attractive early-drinking white wine. Screw-cap; 12.5 per cent alcohol.

Ageing? Drink now to four years.

Stockists include Dan Murphy's Australia-wide.