In “Wines of Sardinia,” writer Patricia Thomson covers the deep winemaking history of Sardinia while profiling seven iconic wines. Included in the list:
ARGIOLAS Turriga Isola dei Nuraghi
“Antonio Argiolas worked until the day he died at age 102. The founder of Argiolas winery wasn’t alone; Sardinia is full of centenarians. Some link that longevity to cannonau, the island’s most widely planted grape. A genetic cousin to Grenache, it’s particularly loaded with antioxidants. Turriga, a cannonau blend, propelled both Argiolas and cannonau onto the world stage. The winery had been producing bulk wine for its first 50 years, but in 1988 began consulting with Tachis. The enologist loved blends, especially those with French varieties. Argiolas, however, was a diehard loyalist to Sardinian grapes. They came up with Turriga, a full-bodied red that places cannonau front and center, then adds complexity with carignano, malvasia nera, bovale sardo, and two years in barrique. 'Our Idea was to use traditional varieties but with international style,' says granddaughter Valentina Argiolas. Debuting in 1991 at the VinItaly wine fair, 'Turriga was a success story from the beginning,' says Valentina. It was the first Sardinian wine to be exported, and today is the mostly highly rated."