The treasures of this little-known region are nature, history, art, ancient traditions and, of course, gastronomy. Travelling in Molise gives the feeling of being on a journey of discovery. Untouched landscapes with archaic agrarian traditions make Molise more attractive. If you are travelling to Italy and looking for the off the beaten track, far from mainstream destinations, Molisa has all of it to offer. Predominant mountains, hilly landscape, sandy beaches with blue, crystal-clear water and ancient traditions of winemaking and viticulture.
Start packing your bags to have an authentic travel in Molise wine region. In this guide we will answer your questions:
HISTORY BOX: History of viticulture and winemaking in Molise wine regions goes back as far as 500 BC. Ancient Samnites, Etruscans and Romans discovered the potential of this fertile land. The history Molise is closely intertwined with that of its neighbours, Abruzzo and Puglia. until 1963 it was under the shadow of Abruzzo and only after gaining the status of an independent administrative unit. Molise wine region started to produce wines under the regional name. Later in 1980s Molise wine region gained two independent DOCs: Biferno and Pentro di Isernia. In 1998 Molise del Molise DOC also joined this list, producing wines regionwide.
Molise – Italy’s little unknown
Molise wine region is Italy’s second smallest after the Aosta Valley. It neighbours withAbruzzo and Lazio to the north and Campania and Puglia to the south. The vineyards here stretch from the Adriatic coast in the east to Isernia in the interior. They are predominantly in hilly locations up to 600 meters above sea level. Although little known, Molise comprises a vineyard of about 7600 hectares, which is very fractionated.
Grapes of Molise Wine Region
The range of grape variety of Molise Wine Region in white and red varieties is largely identical to the neighbouring regions. In the red varieties are Aglianico, Montepulciano, Sangiovese and Cabernet Sauvignon of importance, when in the white, Bombino Bianco, Greco, Fiano, Malvasia As well as some international grape varieties. Just 5 % of the wine production is DOC wines, the majority of wines come as IGT on the market.
Red grape varieties:
White grape varieties:
What to Drink?
The most important areas in Molise wine region are where DOC Biferno and Pentro di Isernia wines are produced. First – in the Campobasso region in the east of Molise and Pentro di Isernia in the west of the region.
DOC Biferno production covers red, white and rose wines. White blends mainly use Trebbiano Toscano and Bombino Bianco grape varieties. Wines from Trebbiano grape are light-bodied and display crisp, acidic hints of lemon and minerality. As for red wines from DOC Biferno, major grape varieties used are Montepulciano and Aglianico. These are full-bodied red wines with black fruit and floral aromas.
DOC Pentro di Isernia produces also red, white and rose wines with more or less the same predominant grape varieties. However, here in red wine production, they use Montepulciano-Sangiovese blend.
Where to go?
Campobasso – full of cultural treasures
A historic city, overlooked by Monforte Castle, is full of cultural treasures. From the Castello Monforte, you have a very good view of the rest of the city and the surrounding countryside. Noteworthy is the Samnite Provincial Museum, which houses valuable cultural-historical testimonies of local peoples from prehistory to the time of Samnite settlement. In the city centre near Piazza Prefettura, you can visit some beautiful buildings and monuments.
Termoli – the beautiful city on the sea
Particularly impressive here is the promontory on which lies the ancient center of Tremoli. Not far from the more modern area, this is surrounded by a high fortress wall and characterized by the typical flair of a marine town. The imposing tower at the entrance of the center is the only preserved tower of the ancient fortress of the Hohenstaufen and today symbol of the city.
The Cathedral Square is dominated by the charming façade of the Romanesque San Basso Cathedral, which houses the relics of the two patron saints of the city: San Basso and San Timoteo.
Agnone – the village of church bells
This little charming village is best known for producing church bells. Among them is also the bell foundry of Marinelli (Pontificia Fonderia Marinelli), whose origins go back to 1040 and they use the medieval techniques for the production until today. Thus, the small town also has a bell museum. If you are looking for something out of the ordinary and would like to look over the bell founder’s shoulder, you should visit this place.
For Nature Lovers
The National Park of Abruzzo-Lazio-Molise reveals unexpectedly beautiful landscapes, while the numerous nature reserves preserve the native flora and fauna.
Tratturi – historical paths of the Transhumanz
The tradition of the area also includes the Tratturi, land routes along which once the farmers led the cattle during the transhumance. These are today evidence of an ancient land culture and offer the opportunity to make magical walks and walks.
National park of Molise – where nature invites to stroll
For nature lovers, there are also hiking trails and trekking paths in the many nature reserves such as the National Park of Abruzzo-Lazio-Molise or the WWF oasis Guardaregia-Campochiaro, between forests, streams, canyons, and waterfalls. Many mountain ranges can be explored by mountain bike and on the coast interesting bike trails lure.
Campitello Matese – paradise for skiing
The Campitello Matese ski resort is located in the province of Campobasso. For skiing and snowboarding, 19.9 km of slopes are available. 5 lifts transport the guests. The winter sports area lies at an altitude of 1,417 to 1,872 m.
What to Eat?
A rural choice of food
The cuisine at Molise is down-to-earth, traditional and very spicy. It uses vegetables that are grown regionally, especially legumes such as beans, peas, lentils, chickpeas, but also peppers, tomatoes, eggplant, and zucchini. Especially the legumes, which used to be dried for the winter, can be found in many traditional dishes. Molise uses a lot of spelled flour. From it, both bread and pasta and cake are prepared.
Crioli all Campuasciana – Special Pasta
Crioli alla campuasciana are special homemade pasta-like noodles which are cut into strips and served with tomato sauce. This very simple dish tastes delicious.
Fennel Soup with Baccalà – A Traditional Dish to Warm up
These fennel soup is served either with stockfish, pumpkin or potatoes.
Ajelle cu le Patane – Lamb and Potatoes
A typical Campobasso dish made with chopped lamb baked in the oven with potatoes. It is refined with herbs in this region.
Calabria is a jewel on the toe of Italy. Calabria has a large number of wineries that offer wine tasting and tour. Visit our website to book beautiful wine-filled experiences and learn more about the wine region.