Italian Wine

Italy's glowing reputation with wine is due not only to the fact that it produces and exports more than any other country but that it offers the greatest variety of types, ranging through nearly every colour, flavour and style imaginable.

Italian producers have moved rapidly to the forefront of world enology, improving techniques to create wines of undeniable class in every region, north and south. Their wines derive not only from native vines, which represent an enormous array, but also from a complete range of international varieties.

In the past it was sometimes said that Italians kept their best wines to themselves while supplying foreign markets with tasty but anonymous vino in economy sized bottles. But markets have changed radically in recent times as consumers in many lands,most importantly in Italy itself, have insisted on better quality.

For a while it may have seemed that the worldwide trend to standardize vines and wines was bound to compromise Italy's role as the champion of diversity. But, instead, leading producers in many parts of the country have kept the emphasis firmly on traditional vines. They have taken the authentic treasures of their ancient land and enhanced them in modern wines whose aromas and flavors are not to be experienced anywhere else. Getting to know the unique wines of Italy is an endless adventure in taste.

Experts increasingly rate Italy's premier wines among the worlds finest. Many of the noblest originate in the more than 300 zones officially classified as DOC or DOCG or, more recently, in areas recognized for typical wines under IGT (see DOC, DOCG & IGT). But a number of special wines carry their own proudly individualistic identities. Wine drinkers abroad, not always aware of the wealth of types (or perhaps overwhelmed by the numbers); have not always taken advantage of this unmatchable variety.