Perhaps more than anything else, a good wine, with its own unique connection to the land where its grapes are grown and fermented, has the power to conjure a distinct sense of place, both in the mind and on the palate.
When it comes to winemaking, few countries rival Italy for being able to show off the sheer variety of flavours concentrated in one land – from the Alpine wineries of the north, to the Mediterranean heat of the south. Its startling diversity has captured the imaginations of generations of visitors, drawing thousands every year to explore the differences that emerge from region to region, vineyard to vineyard, and even field to field.
Just the memory of the refreshing crispness of a cool glass of white wine on a hot Puglian afternoon, or the full roundness of a complex red enjoyed slowly over a lingering dinner on a warm Tuscan evening, can awaken a sense of desire for a place.
But the precise grassy crispness of the cool glass of Pinot Grigio you enjoyed on a vineyard tour needn’t remain solely in the imagination. Nor should the taste of that gutsy red you had with a steak Fiorentina near the Palazzo Vecchio only be able to be revisited after a flight to a Tuscan holiday.
Introducing The Wine Flyer
The Wine Flyer’s mission is to make the wines you experience on trips abroad accessible to everyone, all the time.
It's a unique online wine store: with The Wine Flyer, you collect Avios (the reward currency of British Airways) with every bottle purchased when you connect your British Airways Executive Club account, so you can use your Avios to get back to your favourite places or discover new ones. You can also use your Avios to contribute to your wine purchases.
What's more, it's free to become a British Airways Executive Club member, and it's open to everyone. Using years of experience selecting and serving wines in the aviation environment, The Wine Flyer partners with producers and growers to curate a broad offering of wines that capture the atmosphere and character of a place.
From classic and traditional styles, through to wines made with lesser-known grapes, it works with established makers and innovative producers, not only offering wines from the Old and New Worlds but also from up-and-coming wine regions.
Many of the wines are served on British Airways flights. Some come from well-loved and high-regarded makers such as Whispering Angel, Penfolds and Moët. Others are lesser known or up-and-coming, chosen to complement and round out The Wine Flyer’s excellent offering.
It’s possible to explore the breadth of Italy’s wine narrative through The Wine Flyer’s cases, specially selected combinations of bottles which capture the multiplicity of flavours the country has to offer. And, if the longing to visit still isn’t satisfied, every pound spent with The Wine Flyer collects five Avios, perhaps speeding the day you find yourself in the vineyards of Umbria once more.
Here's a sumptuous selection of Italian reds and whites, and rosé to whet your appetite and spark your wanderlust...
A trio of recommended Italian reds
The rich tapestry of Italy’s wine heritage shines through in this selection of three wines, and the warmth and ease of Southern Italy is particularly captured in the ripe, full fruits used to make them.
Bright and fruity, each of the bottlings in this case of 12 is made from a single variety of grape – Primitivo from Montepulciano, for example, or Nero d’Avola, the signature grape variety from Sicily – allowing them to show off their distinctive qualities.
Three inviting Italian whites
Pinot Grigio is the grape variety that will spring to mind when thinking about Italian whites, and this case ensures it has the chance to sing. But it’s not the only style Italy has to offer.
Other native varietals shine alongside the classic in this collection, which features 12 wines made with lesser-known grapes such as the Sicilian native Grillo and the Calabrian variety Lucido, to create a fresh and vibrant mix.
Raise a glass to remarkable Italian rosé
The winemakers of Provence may want you to believe in the superiority of their rosés, but Italians might beg to differ.
This case of 12 demonstrates the difference, bringing to the fore three well-made Italian rosés including a striking salmon pink, organic rosato, made with 100 per cent Nero d’Avola grapes in Sicily which offers white peach and elderberry flavours and a delicious and evocative alternative to the paler French styles.
Add some sparkle with Italian prosecco
When it comes to Italian glamour, a genuine glass of chilled celebratory Prosecco, predominantly produced using Glera grapes from the northeastern region of Veneto, is hard to beat. Whether you like your Prosecco sweet or dry, fruity or crisp, The Wine Flyer has the ideal bundle of 12 bottles for raising a toast at Christmas and seeing in 2024 in fine style, with something for every palate.
Enjoy a fine Prosecco from one of the oldest producers in Veneto: Mionetto Prosecco DOC Brut NV is crisp and refreshing with a hint of sweetness.
There's also lots to love about i Heart Prosecco NV – a bubbly and fruity easy-drinking Prosecco with notes of sweet peach and apples – and Dea del Mare Prosecco DOC Spumante Extra Dry NV, a great-value tipple with flavours of apple and pear.
*All products sold are subject to availability. Occasionally The Wine Flyer may have to substitute wines for another vintage or a different wine of at least equal value. Prices correct at the time of publication