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Dodiciettari by Vigna dei Lupi

A winery to match my own passion for wine — small in size and big at heart

On the hunt for unique wines

Toward the end of VinItaly 2013, I was on a mission to find one of my favorite, and for the most part undiscovered wines – Taurasi! Taurasi is a red wine made from Aglianico grapes. It is often called the Barolo of the south, but in my opinion, it is an unparalleled product. It can’t be compared to anything else.

I first experienced Tausari in Positano and on the Amalfi Coast. Most of the presenters in the Campagnia pavilion at VinItaly were small, a huge difference between from the Piedmont and Tuscany pavilions I had just come from, where the exhibit booths are huge and elaborate. That alone tells me there is a lot of money made on the more common, traditional Italian wines.

Those wines are wonderful, they are famous for a reason. But it’s also my cue to keep looking for smaller winemakers with a heart for growing unique regional grapes to promote their territory. The wines that aren’t well known on the international scene. 

Planting the seed for a fruitful relationship

My buddy Marco Colombini (in the light-colored jacket below) was the first person I met that day. When I recently asked him to tell me about why he selected DOCG Imports as their first USA importer, he said, “You came to us for a simple tasting, you stayed for three hours and didn’t want to leave!” He’s so right. That was the day I discovered Dodiciettari and I still haven’t left. I knew then that when I started DOCG Imports, they would be a part of it. 

They had me taste all their wines and offered up regional dellights of salame, sausage, cheese, bread and even sundried chilies. They hosted me as if we had known each other for years and, in fact, now that we have known each other for years I feel like a part of their family. This is the best part of Italian culture, the incredible hospitlity and enthusiam to share local traditions in food and wine with others who share that love and passion.

That wonderful afternoon remained in our hearts. We stayed in touch and after a few years, have created the conditions to work together. I’ve selected DODICIETTARI as my supplier for the great wines of Avellino, a volcanic area near Naples in the Campania region in southern italy, which is becoming more famous all the time for their exceptional wines and love of life.

Friends having fun, making seriously good wine

Vigna dei Lupi (vines of wolves) is the winery that produces the Dodiciettari line of wines. Founded in 2007, this small group of friends who decided to purchase and work 12 acres of premium wine country (12 acres = Dodicettari) is having a great time producing the wine of their dreams.

Now let me be very clear, these guys are not old-school winemakers, they are not a multi-generational, family-run winery, like most of the other wineries I’ve chosen to work with. These are young, passionate, fun-loving wine afficianados (like me!) who decided to make an investment in the winemaking industry and are just getting started.

Today, they produce about 25,000 bottles of wine, they aim to arrive at a production of 150,000 within the next five years. They plan to keep their endeavor small and traditional, while keeping the passion and enthusiasm as a central focus in their winemaking philosophy. I promise you can taste every drop of love they have for their new-found profession in every glass.

DOCG Imports brings you their entire line of wines, each is numbered 1 through 6 to bring the full range of traditional wines from their region.

The Taurasi, Number 4, is an absolute gem. The 2011 vintage is fabulous now and is evolving into something amazing over the next 10 years. The Rosato, Number 6, is a stunning Rosè made from the Aliganico grape and something to behold and enjoy with salame and cheese. There will not be a lot of this wine on the market in Italy, and a VERY limited quantity here in California. Be one of the lucky ones with a few bottles on hand. I know I will stash some away in my cellar!

Contact Marina to bring the full line of Campagnia region wines to your restaurant or shop our wine store to bring them to your home table.