1455 Van Ness Avenue
San Fransico, CA 94109
(415) 440-4001

Home > Variety > Forastera
Forastera is a white-wine grape widely planted in Campania, southern Italy. It is used in both blended and varietal wines, usually contributing aromas of stone fruit such as peach and apricot along with herby maquis, together with a distinctive almond flavor. Varietal Forastera wines are light and fresh and best drunk in their youth.
The islands of Procida and Ischia, just off the coast of Campania, are the main breeding grounds of the variety, and the Ischia DOC allows for varietal Forastera wines under the Ischia Forastera title. More often, however, the grape is blended with Biancolella, another Campanian variety found widely on Ischia. Forastera is also planted on the Italian island of Sardinia, although to a lesser extent.

Ampelographers believe that the name Forastera is derived from the Italian word forestiero which means "foreign" and could be an indication that the grape didn't originate on the Campanian islands. However, the first recorded mention of the grape was on the island of Ischia in the 1877 writings of winemaker Giuseppe Rovasenda, the Conti di Rovasenda whose ancestors served in the court of the Dukes of Savoy. Additional late 19th century writings from ampelographer Giuseppe Froio also described the grape growing in Ischia.
Forastera Grapes

Rovasenda also noted back in 1877 that Forastera was also being cultivated in the province of Bergamo in Lombardy around the town of Grumello del Monte though the grape is no longer grown there today though this accounts hints that the "foreign" grape may have a northern Italian origin