Italy and wine, a true love story! Starting from the day the Greek discovered the land with all its native vines, and called it Oenotria, « the land of wine ».
A brief history of the vineyard
Italy is undoubtedly the region of Europe with the most perfect climate for viticulture.
Benefiting from both a Mediterranean and a mountain climate, it was first the Etruscans, the Greeks and of course the Romans who developed viticulture, on the fertile lands of Italy.
The Roman Empire instigated viticulture in many parts of Europe, and in Italy, their viticultural and oenological knowledge was so advanced that it took centuries to see new advances.
During the 19th century, winemaking and aging methods improved, thanks to the use of corks for example. And as wines increasingly traveled across lands and oceans, names such as Chianti, Barolo and Marsala gained notoriety in Europe and beyond.
The quality of the Piedmontese and Tuscan reds, made from Nebbiolo and Sangiovese, also became quite notorious.
Despite the phylloxera crisis, which reduced the number of local grape varieties, Italy remains one of the richest regions in terms of native grape varieties.
Since the 1960s, and the laws on designations of origin (“Denominazione di Origine”) we speak of a modern renaissance of Italian wine.
400 indigenous grape varieties
More than 400 indigenous grape varieties.
Today Italy counts 356 DOC and DOCG (denominazione di origine controllata e garantiea).
Veneto, North-East of Italy: it is one of the main wine regions with 20% of production. The most famous appellations are Amarone della Valpolicella, Bardolino, Prosecco, Soave and Valpolicella.
Puglia, South-East of the peninsula: it represents 17% of the wine production in Italy. Here the most common grape varieties are: Negroamaro, Primitivo, Bombino Nero, etc.
Piedmont, northwest of the country: this region has many protected designations, including Moscato d’Asti, Barolo, Barbaresco…
Tuscany: with Brunello di Montalcino, Chianti…
Sicily: known for its high quality wines, with popular local varieties such as Nero d’Avola.
Note that Italy has more than 400 indigenous grape varieties authorized in its appellations. That’s at least four hundred good reasons to stay curious!
Extent of the vineyard
In 2020 the Italian vineyard represented more than 719,000 hectares.
Italy has the fourth largest vineyard surface area in the world. It represents 10% of the world’s vineyard area according to the International Organization of Vine and Wine (OIV, 2021).
DISCOVER OUR SELECTION OF ITALIAN WINES
Carlo Hauner Hierà
Tenuta Santa Maria Valpolicella Classico Superiore
A6mani Familia Primitivo di Manduria DOP
Ita Brut Prosecco Spumante (N.V.)