Italian wines

Speaking of wine, which country comes to mind first? That's right – Italy. Just imagine, a real pasta with cheese and tomato sauce and a glass of wine, tempting, right?

So, in such a dynamically developing world, how has Italy secured its position as a leader in the global wine community? And which wines are rightly considered the best in the world? We will analyse them in this article.

Let's start with the history.

The history of wine in Italy began in the 8th century BC, when the Mycenaean Greeks first landed in the area of southern Italy and the island of Sicily, where the climate and terrain were ideal for growing grapes. Or as the Greeks called this land - “Enotria” which means "land of wine" in Greek.

Historical metamorphoses have not spared the wine industry.

In the 2nd century BC, the Romans won a military victory over the Greeks and conquered territories. Wise rulers chose the right path of government and, instead of completely destroying the wine-making activity, they improved it, using all their skills, abilities and available means. This strengthened their authority and economic power.

At the time of the great Roman Empire, the Italian wine peninsula was a leader in international and internal wine trade.

Even after the fall of the Roman Empire, the centuries-old experience and culture of winemaking remained in the area, surviving and improving for decades and centuries.

Perhaps the next massive round of changes in Italian wine culture occurred after the Second World War.

In 1963, Italian wines were systematised, and winemakers proposed a special system of wine names. Special methods were also developed to determine the important qualities and ways to determine the significance of a particular type of wine.

Over the years, this method of systematisation has been modified and adapted to the realities of modern times.

In 1992, it was proposed to systematise wines, according to the regions of production and quality of the wine.

Modern wine system includes:

  1. IGT (Indicazione Geografica Tipica or Standard Geographical Index)
  2. DOC (Denominazione di Origine Controllata or Standard of Origin Control)
  3. DOCG (Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita or Standard of Origin Control and Guarantee)

Surprisingly, these innovations have significantly increased the demand for wine at home and abroad. From around 2005 to the present day, Italian wines have accounted for around 20% of the wine market.

Imagine the quality of a wine that has maintained its position over the years, despite competition and global upheavals.

So, where exactly does Italian wine come from?

Italy is rightly considered to be the most wine-producing country in the world. There is no country richer in vineyards (more than 350 grape varieties). Imagine 20 regions (spread across the Italian peninsula) dedicated to wine production.

Of course, it is too much to describe all 20 regions. That is why we will tell you about the most famous ones. (on whose territory up to half of the total volume of wine is produced).

Veneto Region

The region is located in the north-east part of Italy. The region is situated at the crossroads of cold and warm climates, which makes the soil very fertile for vineyards.

According to statistics, up to 11 million hectolitrs of wine are produced in this region every year, which is about 18% of the total volume.

The most popular wines produced in this region are: «Pinot Grigio», «Valpolicella», «Amarone» and «Prosecco wine» .

Wine lovers can take part in themed excursions to the region’s most popular wineries. The Corvezzo Winery,for example, is open to the public.

Tuscany Region

The region is located in the central part of Italy and is characterised by a mild Mediterranean climate with moderate precipitation. The predominate sandy-clay soils are suitably for vineyards.

The most popular wines produced in this region are: «Chianti», «Brunello di Montalcino», «Carmignano» and «Bolgheri Bianco».

Wine lovers can take part in themed excursions to the region’s most popular wineries. The Cantina Etrusca winery, for example, is open to the public.

Lombardy Region

located in the northern part of Italy, the region is characterised by a continental, but cooler climate and vineyards that love well-drained, alluvial soils.

According to statistics, around 7% of the country’s total wine production is produced in this region each year.

The most popular wines produced in this region are: «Rosso di Valtellina», «Sforzato di Valtellina», «Lugana» and «Moscato».

Wine lovers can take part in themed excursions to the region’s most popular wineries. The Villa Amoroso winery,for example, is open to the public.

Famous Italian wines

In this section, we would like to analyse the top of the most popular Italian wines that deserve the attention of any self-respecting wine lover.

Chianti wine

Colour: Red wine

Degree of sweetness: dry

Combination with food: pizza with tomato sauce or meat dishes (such as lamb, roast beef and venison).

Valpolicella wine

Colour: red

Degree of sweetness: dry

Combination with food: meat dishes (e.g. chicken and pork), grilled vegetables, pizza.

Prosecco wine

Colour: White wine

Degree of sweetness: sparkling

Combination with food: seafood, cheeses, dried meat

And what Italian wine do you like?