Sardinia’s wines have improved greatly during the last few years, thanks to a new generation of independent winemakers that has taken over the vineyards. The island is best known for its signature red, the potent, peppery Cannonau, the local name for the Grenache grape. Cannonau pairs well with grilled and roasted meat. Vermentino, a fresh, green-tinged white wine from Gallura (a region of northern Sardinia) is an ideal choice with seafood.
Perhaps the best producer in the Gallura DOCG (“Controlled Designation of Origin Guaranteed”) is Capichera. Beyond the Gallura Vermentinos, another excellent producer is the Argiolas winery just outside of Cagliari. Its cantina white, Costamolino, a crisp Vermentino blend with a note of green apple, is found on wine lists all over the island. Anyone visiting Oliena should stop by the Cantina Gostolai, where a friendly former schoolteacher offers a fascinating lesson in Cannonau wines. Another Cannonau producer to look for is Giuseppe Sedilesu, which makes organic and biodynamic wines. And perhaps the most interesting red wine in Sardinia today, a blend of Cannonau with two other local grapes, Muristellu and Monica, is made by Fradiles, in Atzara in the central province of Nuoro.