Italian Wine – A Guide to Red and White Italian Wine

Italian Wine - A Guide To Red And White Italian Wine

Italian Wine – A Guide to Red and White Italian Wine

There is not one bit of Italy that is incapable of growing grapes. Italy is the 2nd largest wine producing country in the world, just below France. Italy’s geographical characteristics make it ideal to grow every type of grape that the world has to offer. The fact that Italy is so long means wine growing can be grown from the Alps right down to the south end, within sight of Africa. Because Italy is a peninsula country with a long shore line on each side of the country, this creates costal climate growing wine regions. Also because Italy is full of high mountains, and hills, it provides many different altitudes, and types of soils and climate for all types of grape growing.

Italy hosts some of the oldest wine producing regions in the world. Etruscans and Greek settlers began producing wine in Italy before the Romans began developing there own more organised vineyards. When the Romans began making there vineyards they established a larger scale production and storage technique. Italy today is estimated to produce one-fifth of the worlds wine production.

Italian Red Wine

Italy’s red wine is some of the best red wine in the world. Italian red wine is generally full bodied and very dominant. This wine is the perfect to compliment Italy’s rich and wonderful food. In Italy over 60% of its wine grown and produced is red wine. Popular red wines from Italy are:-





Brunello di Montalcino

Italian White Wine

Italy’s white wines are less popular than their neighbouring red wine companion. Italy’s white wines are less powerful than the red wines they tend to be more crisp, soft and acidic.

These wines are also great with food, and Italy’s white wine is said to accompany food without overpower it. Italy’s white wine which is made from the worlds popular white wine grapes tends to be of a different taste. These wines tend to be richer when grown in Italy’s soils. Popular white wines from Italy are:-

Pinot Grigio






Italian Chardonnay


Ideally, Italian red wine are best enjoyed in Italy, in the wine growing areas made famous over centuries of wine production – Chianti, Lambrusco and Barolo – with Chianti perhaps the best known of all with its distinctive raffia-clad bottles providing an extra air of foreign charm.

Italy’s red wines are produced in great quantity and account for 20% of the world’s production.  Grown on mountainsides and hills with a great variety of soil and climate conditions, over sixty percent of the wine grown in Italy is red, with variations according to the different wine-growing areas.  The cool, mountainous northern region of Emilia-Romagna produces crisp, austere wines, like Lambrusco which is light and slightly fizzy, so is often served cold.  Renowned for its subtle berry flavors, Lambrusco’s fizz comes from a second fermentation process done under pressure.

A very different red wine is Barolo, with a high tannin content which softens as it ages into a full bodied red much sought after by connoisseurs. Barolo comes from the Piedmont area and is made from Nebbiolo grapes.  Another quite different red wine is Amarone, from the Corvina region, made from partly dried grapes with other syrupy fruits added.  The sunny, temperate central region of Tuscany yields bold, lusty, full-bodied wines such as Chianti, with many different qualities according to the winery, but the best one is Chianti Classico.  Normally Chianti has a fruity scent and tastes dry and soft.  Chianti from Tuscany remains the all-time favorite with tourists particularly and is best enjoyed with a Tuscan sunset turning the fields to gold and the cypress trees a dark green as they outline the curves of the romantic Tuscan countryside.

There was a story, perhaps apocryphal, that Italian wines did not travel well and thus there was always enough kept at home in Italy for the Italians to enjoy.  Not true today when Italian wines are exported all over the world for international wine lovers to enjoy as well.

Choosing the right red wine to go with a meal can be as complicated as you wish, but a general rule is to enjoy it with red meat or strongly flavored food, as white wine seems to go better with chicken and fish.  Rules are made to be broken however, if you find a red wine you particularly enjoy, you can drink it with any meal, especially if you are dining on Italy’s rich cuisine.

Another notable Italian red wine is Barbaresco, similar to Barolo but it tends to be softer and slightly more graceful.  There are just three, small growing regions for Barbaresco compared to Barolo’s eleven.  Barbaresco, too, requires aging to reach its full potential but is drinkable a little sooner than Barolo.

Bardolino is another famous red, lighter and fruity from the Veneto region of Italy. Named after the town of Bardolino on Lake Garda, this wine has faint cherry flavors and just a hint of spiciness.  The star of Italian red wines however is Brunello Di Montalcino from a little medieval town just outside Siena. Brunello, “the nice, dark one” in local dialect, is Tuscany’s most expensive, rarest, and longest-lived wine.  Whether it is Chianti, Amarone, Barolo, or Barbaresco, enjoying Italian red wine is a unique pleasure, suitable for all occasions and for all seasons.

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Italian Wine - A Guide To Red And White Italian Wine
Italian Wine - A Guide To Red And White Italian Wine
Italian Wine - A Guide To Red And White Italian Wine
Italian Wine - A Guide To Red And White Italian Wine

Italian Wine - A Guide To Red And White Italian Wine

Italian Wine - A Guide To Red And White Italian Wine