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Italian Wines

The panorama of Italian wines offers a vast typology like no other country. Talking about it means embarking on a long journey of history, culture and traditions. From Trentino to Sicily, from Friuli to Sardinia, among the various enchanting landscapes it is difficult not to find the presence of vines, and each region offers a great variety of indigenous grapes, cultivated since ever. The different grape varieties, the territorial conformation, the climatic conditions and the different local traditions make our peninsula the ideal place for a varied production of the highest quality.

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The panorama of Italian wines offers a vast typology like no other country. Talking about it means embarking on a long journey of history, culture and traditions. From Trentino to Sicily, from Friuli to Sardinia, among the various enchanting landscapes it is difficult not to find the presence of vines, and each region offers a great variety of indigenous grapes, cultivated since ever. The different grape varieties, the territorial conformation, the climatic conditions and the different local traditions make our peninsula the ideal place for a varied production of the highest quality.

Wines of Italy

Italy is one of the most important wine-growing centres in the world: here the cultivation of the vinifera vine and the production of wine have reached levels of excellence, thanks to favourable geo-climatic characteristics and a millenary tradition that has its roots in antiquity and continues to this day. This uniqueness is due to the great variety of vines scattered throughout the country: an impressive heritage that includes hundreds of indigenous types, among which stand out for their diffusion, red wines such as Sangiovese, Barbera, Nebbiolo, as well as international varieties that have found optimal conditions in the ''boot'', such as Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Syrah and others.

Italian wine is regulated by national legislation through regulations that establish its name and classification. Alongside the so-called 'generics', there are the designations of: IGT, linked to the concept of geographical area; DOC, for the typical production of a territory that respects precise quality criteria; and DOCG, created to valorise expressions of particular value that have distinguished themselves within the DOC. The possible mentions of Classico, Superiore and Riserva are applied to indicate respectively: the ancient area of origin of the wine, better alcoholic and qualitative characteristics of the grapes used and longer ageing times than those established by the regulations.

The richness and vastness of the Italian wine scene is favoured by the heterogeneity of the geo-climatic conditions of the territory: not only can each region boast a unique heritage of traditions, characteristics and types but, even within the same region, it is possible to distinguish between different production areas. Famous terroirs are those of the Langhe, cradle of Barolo and Barbaresco; of Franciacorta, for Italian sparkling wine produced with the classic method; of the hilly territories of Friuli, where fragrant and intense Italian white wines are produced; Valpolicella, not only for Amarone; the hillside villages of Tuscany, home of Brunello di Montalcino and the famous Super Tuscans; Irpinia, with its mineral and expressive whites; the sunny expanses of Salento; the slopes of Mount Etna and many other areas. These are only a fraction of the names, production areas and grape varieties present in Italy today, which, together with many others, contribute to that inestimable artistic and cultural wealth known throughout the world.



History, Tradition and Culture

The Greeks were probably the first to introduce grapes to our country. The vine was introduced to the Peninsula as far back as 1000 B.C. during the colonisation campaigns of the Mediterranean where the Greeks also exported their products, including the vine. Calabria and Sicily were the first commercial bases, and then gradually spread to Campania and the centre. The Greeks immediately understood the commercial potential of alcoholic beverages and saw Italy as the perfect land in which to produce them.

The development of viticulture and winemaking was the work of the Romans, who made a fundamental change for the growth of Italy's wine trade. They expanded vine cultivation throughout the north, as far as Gaul and Britain. The wine expressions were obviously not the same as the ones we are used to drinking, but were often diluted with water or added with honey and spices.

With the barbarian invasions the Roman Empire fell and thus began a long period of sharp decline in production. In the late Middle Ages, wine-growing was kept alive thanks to the monks of the monasteries, who learned and improved wine-growing techniques. The products were aimed at large-scale trade, where the emphasis was on purely quantitative aspects. The first attempts at improvement were made in Tuscany and Piedmont, where the French model of vine cultivation and grape vinification began to be followed, with high quality productions.

The vine began a period of great rediscovery, until the phylloxera disaster in 1875, which destroyed many vineyards. To aggravate the situation of Italian wine there were also the world wars, during which many vineyards were damaged. Only since 1970 has there been a great recovery: the introduction of production regulations and the modernisation of techniques has led to an improvement in quality that started in Tuscany and Piedmont and then touched all the regions, to the point of consecrating our country, together with France, among the world's leading producers. Visit the Callmewine store to find the best bottles of Italian wine among the many offers at competitive prices.