Italy’s most romantic region, Veneto, is also the one that produces the most wine. This traditional wine region accounts for 25% of wine production in Italy. It’s also the region with the highest number of DOCG appellations after Piedmont.
The vineyards of Veneto enjoy a variety of terroirs and climatic conditions. The temperate, humid climate of the Venetian plains rubs shoulders with the Mediterranean-type climate of Lake Garda. The relief and changing geology of the region also offer a great diversity of terroirs: volcanic soils west of Padua, limestone soils south of Vicenza, clay soils in Treviso or marl near Friuli.
This wide range of pedoclimatic conditions conducive to the proper development of the vines has resulted in a wide variety of wines from Veneto. Verona is the main wine-producing region, especially red and white wines intended for everyday consumption.
The region also produces exceptional wines, both qualitatively and for their uniqueness. Amarone di Valpolicella, a wine of great intensity and aromatic complexity, has the particularity of being made from grapes that have been partially dried on racks.
Prosecco, a sparkling wine, is also renowned for its finesse.
Veneto has no less than 14 DOCGs (Denominazione Di Origine Controllata E Garantita, Italy’s AOC), 18 DOCs (Denominazione Di Origine Controllata), and 6 IGTs (Indicazione Geografica Tipica) and the reputation for excellence of some of them has spread far beyond the country’s borders.
The Soave appellation, reserved for a dry Italian white wine made in the Verona region, is a true benchmark. Top quality Soave wine benefits from the DOGC Soave Superiore.
Veneto is also the birthplace of two world-famous and appreciated wines, Amarone della Valpolicella and Prosecco.
Amarone is as famous for its unique, exceptional taste as for its original manufacturing process which allows the concentration of aromas and natural sugars. Since 2010, a DOCG has recognised the exceptional character of this wine with its powerful, intense aromas. The grapes used to make Amarone DOCG can only come from 19 communes. An Amarone that has aged 4 years in barrels enjoys the Amarone Riserva appellation.
Prosecco is the other famous wine from Veneto. DOC Prosecco covers 9 provinces of Veneto. The region also produces top-quality sparkling Prosecco wines. They also enjoy a DOCG. Two Prosecco DOCGs are more specifically known for their elegant, fine wines: Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore and Prosecco Superiore di Cartizze.
Veneto wines give pride of place to local grape varieties. Each wine region in Veneto is characterised by its own indigenous grape varieties of ancient origin.
The dry Italian white wine produced in the region of Lake Garda and the Soave Valley is made from the grape variety of Venetian origin, Garganega. This grape offers notes of citrus and almond to the white wines of Veneto.
Two locally sourced grape varieties are also used to make Amarone: Corvina, which should represent between 45 and 95% of the grapes, and Rondinella, present at a level of 5 to 30%. These two varieties are also used to produce a red Italian table wine, Bardolino.
Another traditional grape variety, Glera, is used to make Prosecco. It must represent at least 85% of the blend. The Prosecco appellation allows the use of other indigenous grape varieties up to a maximum of 15%: Verdiso, Perera and Bianchetta.
Finally, certain Veneto terroirs grow more international grape varieties such as Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. However, it’s the local grape varieties that are the cornerstone behind the excellence and authenticity of Veneto wines.
Grape varieties adapted to their terroirs which man has learnt how to use to perfection thanks to winemaking techniques which really bring out their quintessence.
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