With Italy known as the world’s leading wine producers, wine tours of the Italian wine regions are understandably among the most popular in Europe. Wine consumption in Italy is a huge part of everyday life. It plays a significant role, from socialising in the local bars and restaurants to opening a bottle with the family meal.
It’s estimated that approximately 2.2 billion litres of wine are consumed every year in Italy alone, averaging at around 35 litres per person. That’s not to mention the gallons that are exported to wine-lovers around the globe.
Wineries and vineyards here are in abundance, with Italy being divided into 20 separate wine regions, covering a staggering 702,000 hectares of cultivated land. Many regions host local wine tours and wine tasting events. Which take place at individual vineyards or as an opportunity to turn your entire holiday into an appreciation of fine wine.
Top 5 Italian Wine Regions
The country’s 20 administrative regions match those of the 20 Italian wine regions. Although they can be broken down even further. Each of which brings with them their own individual qualities to wine tours in Italy. In fact, it was in Italy whereby the recognised wine classifications of DOC and DOCG originate. Although, for the devoted wine connoisseur, it’s all down to personal taste.
With so many Italian wine regions to choose from, we take a look at the 5 we consider to be among the very best:
When it comes to knowing what makes a great wine region, it often starts with the natural climate and terroir. As such one of Italy’s most famous regions is no different. Benefiting from both its close proximity of the ice-capped mountains of the Alps and the Mediterranean sunshine, the hills of Piemonte create the perfect environment.
While the mainland attracts much of the attention, the beautiful island of Sardinia is a unique wine region all of its own. During a wine tour of Sardinia each corner of the island will tell its own story. The Vermentino grapes face the north, welcoming the sea breeze. While the rich limestone of the West is ideal conditions for vines such as Torbato, originally imported from Spain.
The historic Island of Sicily can also be divided into further wine regions. While overall Sicily has more vineyards than anywhere else in Italy. The wines and grapes here are varied, although the sweet taste of Marsala is certainly the most common. Along with grapes that are grown from the volcanic soils of Mount Etna.
Food and wine experiences in Tuscany are popular among international food tourists. Combine Tuscan cuisine with the infamous Chianti red wines of Tuscany. As well as, of course, the regions natural beauty. In fact, check out our very own wine tours in Tuscany for more information.
The last wine region on our list could also include the likes of Prosecco’s sparkling wines and the tanning qualities of Umbria. However, on this occasion, we’ve decided upon Vento as one of the top 5 wine regions in Italy. Located in the North of Italy, a wine tour in Veneto covers an alternative to some of those mentioned above. In particular, offering world-class Pinot Grigio, which can be found within bars and supermarkets around the world.
Alternatively, some of the most picturesque wine tours in Italy can be found along the Amalfi Coast.