“Aglianico is a red-wine grape originating in Greece (though no longer found there) but developed chiefly in its present home, southern Italy, notably the Basilicata and Campania regions. There is a highly regarded DOCG (Italian wine appellation), Aglianico del Vulture, in Basilicata; there is now also a DOCG Aglianico del Vulture Superiore. In Campania, there is the Taurasi DOCG, another respected type. The del Vulture must legally be 100% Aglianico; the Taurasi may contain up to 15% of a certain few other reds (Barbera is most often used, though Piedirosso and Sangiovese sometimes show up as well).
Aglianico is a major grape, often called “the Barolo of the South”. Jancis Robinson, in her Guide to Wine Grapes, does not show Aglianico as quite reaching the highest heights, and we have followed by not boldfacing it at the left; but there are not a few wine fanciers who would disagree and designate the grape “world class”. It is now being grown in a few new World areas, notably California but also Texas and Australia (it is most definitely a warm-climate grape). It seems to do especially well on volcanic soils (which drain very well, and Aglianico seems to like dry roots).
Aglianico is a big wine: dark, full-bodied, strong, rich, deep, with the high tannin levels and high acidity that make it an excellently ageable wine. Owing to its tannins and concentration, it can be on the rough side when young, and typically wants at least a few years of bottle age to start showing its fruit and, in general, reaching its great potential. Good specimens tend to taste of dark fruit (cherries and plums are often mentioned), frequently with the overtones of chocolate often found in big red wines. Good examples can readily age for a decade or two to their advantage.
Aglianico was the dominant grape in the well-known ancient Roman Falernian wine—which, curiously, was a white wine (the white-wine grape now known as Greco di Tufo was the other component). Also: DNA analysis suggests that Aglianico and Syrah are related.” – That Useful Wine Site