22 growing regions

Description to Italy

Italy is one of the oldest wine-producing countries, the beginnings go back at least before 1000 BC. At that time, they appeared in central Italy Etruscan on, the areas of the four regions today Abruzzo. Lazio. Tuscany and Umbria populated. The origin of the Italian wine culture lies above all in the Greek colonization, with which in the 10th century BC BC beginning on the island Sicily such as Campania and Calabria Greek wine culture was brought to the peninsula. The Greeks brought many of their grape varieties with named the ideal country for viticulture Oinotria (Land of vines raised on piles). Also practiced at that time those who later became great enemies Phoenicians (Punier) who established bases on Sicily and in the Mediterranean. From the 6th century BC Chr. Started a lively trade with the Celts in Gaul (France), which imported considerable quantities of wine from Upper and Central Italy.

The Romans also learned from all these peoples and led winemaking to high art. In the 3rd century BC The grapevine was widespread everywhere and in the 1st century BC. BC, the wine culture reached a peak. The town Pompeii was 79 BC until it was destroyed by the Vesuvius eruption. The wine trade center and main supplier for the capital Rome. The most famous ancient wines were at that time Caecubian. Falernian and Surrentine, The Romans planted vineyards in the newly won provinces in what are now France, Spain, Portugal, Germany and England. Wine became an import and export item and the Romans already made wooden barrels for it, but they did this from the Celts (Gauls) had learned.

Many Roman authors wrote about viticulture and wine culture z. T. very extensive works and thus enable a very accurate picture. The spectrum ranges from purely scientific (instructive) writings to poetic descriptions to descriptions of the eating and drinking culture, It should be emphasized Satyricon, a custom painting of the Roman upper class. The main authors are in chronological order Cato the Elder (234-149 BC), Virgil (70-19 BC), Horace (65-8 BC), ovid (43 BC to 8 AD), Columella (1st half 1st century), Petronius (14-66) Pliny the Elder (23-79) and Palladius (4th century). Wine became a top-class cultural institution, continuing Greek Dionysos cult enjoyed the wine god Bacchus great worship. The Romans were very creative with winemaking techniques. It was a specialty flavoring to make the wine tastier and more durable.

It was already sparkling wine by storing the amphorae generated in cold spring water (fermentation interruption). In the first century AD, people dealt intensively with the breeding of grape varieties and tried to find the most suitable vine for the respective soil. Many of today's autochthonous vines come from those cultivated at the time ancient grape varieties from. Due to the collapse of the Roman Empire in the 5th century and the turmoil of the peoples' migration, wine culture was forgotten and only became the order of the Roman Catholic monasteries church by producing the measuring wine maintained further.

There was a big boom at the beginning of the Renaissance in the 14th century. In order to revive viticulture, Pope Paul III. (1468-1549) the French wine in eight and spell and had detailed overviews of the then Italian wine. Already in 1716, under Grand Duke Cosimo III. (1642-1723) from the sex of the Medici in Tuscany the wine zones for the Chianti were established, making Italy one of the first countries Origin designation, But it was only when wine types such as Barolo, Brunello and Chianti were created with French help in the 19th century that a new beginning began.

Wine regions

The soil is very diverse, but despite local differences, the climate has common factors. The Alps shield against cold north winds, the Apennines form a 1,500 km weather divide from Piedmont in the north to Sicily in the south. The Mediterranean east and the Tyrrhenian Sea west of the boot as well as the numerous rivers and lakes have a decisive impact. The best regions have temperatures between 12 and 16 ° C, sufficient snow and rainfalls in winter and warm to hot summers with sunshine until late in autumn. The vineyards are laid out from sea level up to 1,000 meters high. The 20 winegrowing regions coincide with the political region boundaries:


Region (Italian)



Abruzzo Abruzzo L'Aquila 33,000
aosta Valley Valle d'Aosta Aosta 500
Apulia Puglia Bari 88,000
Basilicata Basilicata or Lucania Potenza 4000
Emilia-Romagna Emilia-Romagna Bologna 52,000
Friuli-Venezia Giulia Friuli-Venezia Giulia Trieste 24,000
Calabria Calabria Catanzaro 9500
Campania Campania Napoli 24,000
Lazio Latio Romany 19,500
Liguria Liguria Genoa 1500
Lombardy Lombardia Milano 22,500
Brands Marche Ancona 17,500
Molise Molise Campobasso 6000
Piedmont Piemonte Torino 47,500
Sardinia Sardegna formerly Tinakria Cagliari 26,500
Sicily Sicilia Palermo 101000
Tuscany Toscana Firenze 58,000
Trentino-Alto Adige Trentino-Alto Adige Trento 15,500
Umbria Umbria Perugia 13,000
Veneto Veneto Venezia 80,000

Grape varieties and vineyards

At the beginning of the 1990s, the area under vines was still well over a million hectares, but this was due to subsidized clearing programs the European Union were reduced by around 200,000 hectares. In 2012, 45.6 million hectoliters of wine were produced from 713,000 hectares. This puts Italy in the top spot worldwide and knights with it France and Spain for the first place (see under Wine production volumes ). Wine is grown from the north of the country (Trentino-South Tyrol) to the deepest south (Sicily) and on the islands in the Mediterranean. The over DOC and DOCG zones, however, only make up around a fifth of the wine production. There are around two million grape producers, 340,000 cellars and 45,000 wine bottlers. With over 2,000 different grape varieties, Italy has most of the world, quite a few are antique (Greek) origin. Of these, “only” 400 are officially approved. The Blend 2010 with the top 45 (ex Kym Anderson ):



Synonyms / Italian name


Sangiovese red Brunello. Prugnolo Gentile, Nielluccio 71619
Montepulciano red Cordisco, Morellone 34824
Catarratto Bianco White CB Comune, CB Lucido 34794
Merlot red - 28042
Trebbiano Toscano White Trebbiano di Cesena, Tália, Ugni Blanc 22702
Barbera red B. Amaro, B. d'Asti, B. Dolce 20524
Chardonnay White - 19709
Glera White until 2009 Prosecco, Teran Bijeli 18255
Pinot gris White Pinot Grigio 17281
Nero d'Avola red Calabrese, Niureddu Calavrisi 16595
Trebbiano Romagnolo White T. della Fiamma, T. di Romagna 15893
Garganega White Grecanico Dorato 15375
Cabernet Sauvignon red Cabernet 13724
Tribidrag / Zinfandel red Primitivo 12234
Muscat Blanc White Moscato Bianco, Moscato Reale 11506
Negroamaro red Abbruzzese, Purcinara 11460
Trebbiano Giallo White Greco di Velletri, T. dei Castelli, T. di Spagna 10,664
Aglianico red Aglianico del Vulture 9910
Malvasia Bianca di Candia White M. Bianca, M. di Candia, M. Rossa 9231
Corvina Veronese red C. Comune, C. Gentile, C. Nostrana, Cruina 7477
Syrah red - 6739
Garnacha Tinta red Cannonau, Tai Rosso, Vernaccia Nera 6372
Cabernet Franc red Cabernet Frank 6314
Grillo White Ariddu, Riddu, Rossese Bianco 6295
Inzolia White Ansonica, Insolia 6133
Dolcetto red Dolcetto Nero, Nibièu, Nibiò, Ormeasco 6128
Croatina red Bonarda, Nebbiolo di Gattinara, Neretto 5684
Nebbiolo red Chiavennasca, N. del Piemonte, Picotèner 5536
Trebbiano d'Abruzzo White T. Abruzzese, T. Campolese, T. di Teramo 5091
Vermentino White Favorita, Pigato 5046
Pinot Noir red Pinot Nero 5046
Lambrusco Salamino red Lambrusco Galassi, Lambrusco di Santa Croce 5003
Ancellotta red A. di Massenzatico, Ancellotti, Lancellotta 4343
Gaglioppo red G. di Cirò, Galloppo, Lacrima Nera 4214
Sauvignon Blanc White Pellegrina, Sauvignon Bianco 3744
Verdicchio Bianco White Trebbiano di Lugana, Trebbiano di Soave 3526
Pinot Blanc White Pinot Bianco 3086
Falanghina White F. Beneventana, F. Flegrea 3037
Cortese White Corteis, Cortese Bianca 2953
Sauvignonasse White Friulano, Tai, Tuchì (formerly Tocai Friulano) 2911
Nerello Mascalese red Mascalese Nera, Nerello Calabrese 2883
Lambrusco grass parossa red Lambrusco di Castelvetro, Scorzamara 2726
Biancame White B. dalla Forcella, B. Maschio, B. Nostrano 2599
Nero di Troia red Somarello, Uva di Troia 2572
Rondinella red Nessuno Conosciuto 2479

wine law

Until after the Second World War, the focus was on mass. From the 1960s on, a profound change took place. The first area in which the “Italian Wine Wonder” made itself felt was Chianti Classico in Tuscany, where there was a radical break with the past. The wineries contributed to this Antinori. Frescobaldi and Ricasoli in this region and later Ca 'del Bosco in Lombardy. Italian wine changed extremely positively in the last third of the 20th century. With a new wine law, the new quality label "Denominazione di Origine Controllata" (DOC) was introduced in 1963, which made a decisive contribution to quality improvement. The first DOC wine was produced in 1966 Vernaccia di San Gimignano named. It was not until 1980 that the highest level "Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita" (DOCG) followed. There were further changes in 1992 with that after the Minister of Agriculture Giovanni Goria (1943-1994) named "Goria Law" with which the stage IGT was introduced.

Wine categories : In August 2009 the EU wine market regulations with fundamental changes in wine names and quality levels became valid for all member countries. There are the following new names and quality levels (see also in detail under quality system ):

  • Vino (formerly Vino da Tavola or ) = Wine
  • IGP or the alternative old name IGT = country wine
  • DOP or the alternative possible old names DOC and DOCG quality wine

In April 2010 the new national wine law came into force, replacing decree no. 164 from 1992. They were not content with merely adapting to the new EU law, but made a few substantial innovations. The old and new names may be used alternatively or together. This option is there to avoid a "flattening" of the DOCG to the DOC, since both would be standardized if only DOP were used and DOCG still has to be placed above DOC in terms of quality. In summary, there are now stricter and clearer regulations.

Vino : The old name "VdT" (Vino da Tavola) is now, as is generally the case, banned in all EU member countries. There are wines without and with the grape varieties and / or the vintage.

IGT (Indicazione Geografica Tipica) or IGP (Indicazione Geografica Protetta) :
The Vins need one analytical testing undergo (a sensory Testing only takes place for DOC / DOCG wines). The nature of the wine must have a typical, geographically determined characteristic. The requirements are below the DOC / DOCG or DOP level. The areas are usually much larger and in some cases cover entire regions. From the 1980s, the high quality of some IGT wines from Tuscany led to the term Super-Tuscans, There are a total of 118 IGT / IGP wines with around 30% of the production. An area can cover an entire region such as B. Toscana include.

DOC (Denominazione di Origine Controllata) or DOP (Denominazione di Origine Protetta) :
This quality wines with a controlled designation of origin must be processed and expanded from specified grape varieties according to specified quantities and methods (see below). Some DOC zones only produce one wine, others several in different colors, grape varieties or types. As a German-speaking counterpart, the designation QbA (quality wine from certain growing regions) is permissible for South Tyrolean wines. The 332 DOC wines make up around 25%. They are listed in the regions.

DOCG (Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita) or DOP : These quality wines with controlled and guaranteed designation of origin represent the highest Italian "honor class", which guarantees authenticity for particularly highly valued wines. The 74 DOCG wines only make up around 5% of production. For a complete list, see below.

Grape varieties : For DOC / DOCG or DOP wines (quality wines), only the grape varieties permitted in the respective areas may be pressed. for IGT / IGP wines (country wines), varieties under observation are also permitted. They must be mentioned in the production regulations, although this can also be done as a percentage with a tolerance of 1% (previously only the composition in the vineyards was mandatory). It can also table grapes vinified; the previous ban was lifted.

Other requirements : In addition to grape varieties, these are bottle shape, minimum maturation times in barrels and bottles, minimum values for alcohol content. acid and total extract (Dry extract), as well colour and Aroma, Before the marketing takes place sensory and analytical testing, It is also the sub-zone (sottozona), municipality (comune), district (frazione), small climate zone (microzona), winery (Fattoria, Cascina or Podere) and the vineyard parcel ( Vigna ) possible for wines of exceptional quality. This will make the meaning of origin emphasized even more.

Additional quality designations : Three terms are used to identify a special quality of quality wine. The term Classico Designates traditional areas of origin or core zones that are better in terms of soil quality and climatic quality or favored within a DOC / DOCG or DOP area. For example, there is a DOCG area Chianti and a DOCG area Chianti Classico, The terms are those with a higher alcohol content, lower yield limits and / or longer maturation times Superiore and or Riserva allowed.

DOCG wines

DOCG wines are generally the absolute top of Italian wines. If wines have maintained their quality for at least five years, they are awarded DOC status and, after five years at the earliest, DOCG status. In theory, it can also be a single, excellent one brand wine Obtain DOCG status if it “honors Italy”, but this has not yet been done. The very first wine classified as DOCG was in 1980 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano from Tuscany, followed in the same year by Barbaresco. Barolo and Brunello di Montalcino, It was a relatively long time before 1987, the first white wine to come from Emilia-Romagna Albana di Romagna was crowned. The first sparkling or sparkling wines were then in 1994 Asti Spumante and Moscato d'Asti from Piedmont. The list of 75 DOCG:

DOCG area (alternative name)


main grape variety


Aglianico del Taburno red Aglianico Campania
Aglianico del Vulture Superiore red Aglianico Basilicata
Albana di Romagna White Albana Emilia-Romagna
Alta Langa white, rose Chardonnay, PN Piedmont
Amarone della Valpolicella red Corvina, Corvinone Veneto
Asti (Asti Spumante) White Moscato Bianco Piedmont
Bagnoli Friularo (Friularo di Bagnoli) red Raboso Piave Veneto
Barbaresco red Nebbiolo Piedmont
Barbera d'Asti red Barbera Piedmont
Barbera del Monferrato Superiore red Barbera Piedmont
Bardolino Superiore red Corvina Veneto
Barolo red Nebbiolo Piedmont
Brachetto d'Acqui (Acqui) red Brachetto Piedmont
Brunello di Montalcino red Brunello Tuscany
Cannelino di Frascati White Malvasia varieties Lazio
Carmignano red Sangiovese Tuscany
Castel del Monte Bombino Nero red Bombino Nero Apulia
Castel del Monte Nero di Troia Riserva red Nero di Troia Apulia
Castel del Monte Rosso Riserva red Nero di Troia Apulia
Castelli di Jesi Verdicchio Riserva White Verdicchio Brands
Cerasuolo di Vittoria red Nero d'Avola Sicily
Cesanese del Piglio red Cesanese Lazio
Chianti red Sangiovese Tuscany
Chianti Classico red Sangiovese Tuscany
Colli Asolani Prosecco White Glera Veneto
Colli Bolognesi Pignoletto White Pignoletto Emilia-Romagna
Colli di Conegliano White-red various Veneto
Colli Euganei Fior d'Arancio White Moscato Veneto
Colli Orientali del Friuli Picolit White Picolit Friuli
Conegliano-Valdobbiadene Prosecco White Glera Veneto
Conero (Rosso Conero Riserva) red Montepulciano Brands
Dogliani red Dolcetto Piedmont
Dolcetto di Diano d'Alba red Dolcetto Piedmont
Dolcetto di Ovada Superiore (Ovada) red Dolcetto Piedmont
Elba Aleatico Passito (Aleatico P. dell'Elba) red Aleatico Tuscany
Erbaluce di Caluso White Erbaluce Friuli, Veneto
Fiano di Avellino White Fiano Campania
Franciacorta white, rose Chardonnay, PN Lombardy
Frascati Superiore White Malvasia varieties Lazio
Gattinara red Nebbiolo Piedmont
Gavi (Cortese di Gavi, Gavi di Gavi) White Cortese Piedmont
ghemme red Nebbiolo Piedmont
Greco di Tufo White Greco Bianco Campania
Lison White Tai / Friulano Friuli, Veneto
Montecucco Sangiovese red Sangiovese Tuscany
Montefalco Sagrantino red Sagrantino Umbria
Montello Rosso red Merlot, Cab. Franc Veneto
Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Colline Teramane red Montepulciano Abruzzo
Morellino di Scansano red Morellino Tuscany
Moscato d'Asti White Moscato Bianco Piedmont
Moscato di Scanzo red Moscato di Scanzo Lombardy
Nice red Barbera Piemonte
Offida White-red various Brands
Oltrepò Pavese Metodo Classico white, rose Pinot Noir Lombardy
Piave Malanotte (Malanotte del Piave) red Raboso Piave Veneto
Primitivo di Manduria Dolce Naturale red Primitivo Apulia
Ramandolo White verduzzo Friuli
Recioto della Valpolicella red Corvina, Rondinella Veneto
Recioto di Gambellara White Garganega Veneto
Recioto di Soave White Garganega Veneto
Roero White-red Arneis, Nebbio Piedmont
Rosazzo White Friulano Friuli
Ruchè di Castagnole Monferrato red Ruchè Piedmont
Sforzato di Valtellina (Sfursat) red Chiavennasca Lombardy
Soave Superiore White Garganega Veneto
Suvereto red various Tuscany
Taurasi red Aglianico Campania
Terre Tollesi (Tullum) White-red Montepulciano and others Abruzzo
Torgiano Rosso Riserva red Sangiovese Umbria
Val di Cornia Rosso (Rosso della Val di Cornia) red Sangiovese, CS Tuscany
Valtellina Superiore red Nebbiolo Lombardy
Verdicchio di Matelica Riserva White Verdicchio Brands
Vermentino di Gallura White Vermentino Sardinia
Vernaccia di San Gimignano White Vernaccia Tuscany
Vernaccia di Serrapetrona red Vernaccia Nera Brands
Vino Nobile di Montepulciano red Sangiovese Tuscany

Institutions, bodies and personalities

To the most influential Italian wine authors or wine critic counted or counted Burton among others Anderson (USA, but wrote almost exclusively about Italy), Daniele Cernilli, Giancarlo Gariglio, Fabio Giavedoni, Luigi Veronelli and Franco Ziliani, They work or publish in many wine magazines and wine guides such as Gambero Rosso. Slow wine and Veronelli Guide, One of the most famous wine fairs Vinitaly,

In the wine guide you will find
currently 138 060 Wines and 22 865 Producers, including 1 611 classified producers.
Rating system About Their sources in Wine Guide Wine Samples

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