Tasting the native wines of Sardinia

The idyllic island is not just a vacation destination: Consider it your new go-to region for compelling Italian wines.

Mario Pala and Kerin O’Keefe with ungrafted alberello Bovale vines in the background

Situated off the west coast of Italy, postcard-perfect Sardinia, the second-largest island in the Mediterranean after Sicily, is celebrated for its clear turquoise waters, white-sand beaches and wild coastline. But it’s also a paradise for wine lovers.

The island is home to a variety of native grapes, like the island’s signature white—the rich yet refreshing Vermentino—and the lighter-bodied Nuragus. Fans of red wines can turn to selections made from Monica, Carignano and Sardinia’s flagship red, Cannonau, which range from savory and light-bodied to complex and structured. Although not household names, the best bottlings from Sardinia (Sardegna in Italian) are among the most fascinating wines coming out of Italy.

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