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Piedmont Native Vines – First Part
Rosa D'Ancona – December 23, 2006



Introduction

 
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Despite the crises that have hit the wine world in Italy and worldwide in recent years, the Piedmontese enological sector is doing rather well. Given the current critical global situation, this regions' wines are facing marketing difficulties, however they are nowhere close to the hardships faced by other Italian and international wine production zones.

Such positive results are mostly due to the production philosophy adopted by the whole regional wine sector, which is ever more focused on turning out high quality products, in all price ranges and for all the wine varieties, based on both international and native vines.

Piedmont is traditionally the homeland of great red wines, which were already well known and widely appreciated in the Middle Ages, In addition, the region's vitiviniculture roots are rooted in the past, as the first known traces date back to the tenth century. It was with the Roman colonization, however, that viticulture became ubiquitous and widespread in the region.

The vineyards are found mainly in the hilly areas of the region and, to a lesser extent, on mountain ridges. Despite the difficult cultivation conditions presented by the Alps surrounding Turin, but thanks to the use of suitable winemaking techniques, the mountain-grown vines produce truly unique wines, which are appreciated by a wide number of wine buffs, both in Italy and overseas.

  Piedmont region

Though the winemaking techniques have contributed to the production of great wines, the main credit for this goes to the wide variety of great quality vines found in the region. In fact, Piedmont has a huge viticultural heritage, wich includes well known varieties such as Nebbiolo, Barbera, Dolcetto, Arneis, Moscato, Grignolino, Freisa, Bonarda and Croatina, among others. In addition to these main autochthonous, or native, vines, there are many more lesser known varieties, some of which are currently at the core of preservation and exploitation projects, as is the case with the Doux d'Henry, Becuét, Chatus, and Nascetta vines.

The roughly 60,000 hectares (over 148,263 acres) of regional vineyards produce around 3.2 million hectoliters (over 84.5 million gallons) of wine, 60% of which is used to make seven DOCG and 45 DOC wines. With regards to the denomination of origin, Piedmont and its small neighboring Valle d'Aosta are the only two Italian regions which do not produce IGT wines. According to 2001 statistics, Piedmont has 26,564 wine making and vine growing estates, 25,772 of which are owned by individuals, while only 842 belong to some form of company or organization. At the count, 18,476 estates were owned by men, while 7,264 were owned by women.

The vast majority of Piedmont wines are classified VQPRD (Vini di Qualità Prodotti in Regioni Determinate, or Quality Wines Produced in Specific Regions – a European wine classification). The widest sellin among Piedmont DOC and DOCG wines is the Moscato, thanks especially to the large amount exported. The Barbera, however, only by taking into account all the various denominations which include that grape, sells more than the Moscato in the internal Italian marketplace. In addition to the dry and aromatic wines, the spumanti (bubbly and sparkling wines) contribute greatly to the sector's high volume of sales. In 2002, the world famous Asti Spumante sparkling wine was given the Alta Langa denomination of origin, whose regulations allows the production according to the tradizionale (traditional) or classico (Classic) methods only.

In order to further promote and exploit the regional vitiviniculture, and offer a comprehensive journey of the discovery of Piedmont's products and flavors, the local administration has given life to various projects. In addition to creating two wine districts: the Langhe, Roero and Monferrato, and the Canavese, Coste della Sesia and Colline Novaresi, the administration created various Strade del Vino (Wine Roads), ethnological and enological museums, enoteche (official regional and municipal wine bars), and botteghe del vino (specialized wine stores).

DOC and DOCG wines made with the main native vines

NATIVE GRAPES DOC WINES
DOCG WINES
Arneis
  • Langhe
  • Roero
 
Avanà
  • Pinerolese
  • Valsusa

 

Barbera
  • Barbera d'Alba
  • Barbera d'Asti
  • Barbera del Monferrato
  • Canavese
  • Colli Tortonesi
  • Collina Torinese
  • Colline Novaresi
  • Colline Saluzzesi
  • Malvasia di Casorzo o Casorzo
  • Monferrato
  • Piemonte
  • Pinerolese
  • Rubino di Cantavenna
  • Ruché di Castagnole Monferrato
  • Valsusa
Bonarda
  • Albugnano
  • Bramaterra
  • Canavese
  • Collina Torinese
  • Coste della Sesia
  • Fara
  • Lessona
  • Monferrato
  • Piemonte
  • Pinerolese
  • Sizzano
  • Gattinara
Brachetto
  • Piemonte
  • Ruché di Castagnole Monferrato
  • Brachetto d'Acqui
Cortese
  • Colli Tortonesi
  • Cortese dell'Alto Monferrato
  • Monferrato
  • Piemonte
  • Gavi o Cortese di Gavi
Croatina
  • Bramaterra
  • Cisterna d'Asti
  • Colline Novaresi
  • Coste della Sesia
Dolcetto
  • Barbera d'Asti
  • Barbera del Monferrato
  • Colli Tortonesi
  • Dolcetto d'Alba
  • Dolcetto d'Asti
  • Dolcetto delle Langhe Monregalesi
  • Dolcetto di Diano d'Alba o Diano d'Alba
  • Dolcetto di Dogliani
  • Dolcetto di Ovada
  • Langhe
  • Monferrato
  • Pinerolese
  • Valsusa
Doux d'Henry
  • Pinerolese
 
Erbaluce
  • Canavese
  • Colline Novaresi
  • Coste della Sesia
  • Erbaluce di Caluso o Caluso

 

Grignolino
  • Barbera d'Asti
  • Barbera del Monferrato
  • Freisa di Chieri
  • Grignolino del Monferrato Casalese
  • Malvasia di Catorzo o Casorzo
  • Monferrato
  • Piemonte
  • Rubino di Cantavenna
 
Freisa
  • Albugnano
  • Barbera d'Asti
  • Barbera del Monferrato
  • Freisa d'Asti
  • Freisa di Chieri
  • Gabiano
  • Grignolino del Monferrato Casalese
  • Freisa
  • Malvasia di Casorzo o Casorzo
  • Monferrato
  • Pinerolese
  • Rubino di Cantavenna

 

Malvasia di Schierano
  • Collina Torinese
  • Malvasia di Castelnuovo Don Bosco
Malvasia Nera
  • Malvasia di Casorzo o Casorzo
Moscato Bianco
  • Loazzolo
  • Piemonte
  • Asti o Asti Spumante Moscato d'Asti
Nebbiolo
  • Albugnano
  • Boca
  • Bramaterra
  • Canavese
  • Carema
  • Colline Novaresi
  • Colline Saluzzesi
  • Coste della Sesia
  • Fara
  • Langhe
  • Lessona
  • Monferrato
  • Nebbiolo d'Alba
  • Pinerolese
  • Roero
  • Sizzano
  • Barbaresco
  • Barolo
  • Gattinara
  • Gemme
Pelaverga
  • Collina Torinese
  • Colline Saluzzesi
  • Verduno Pelaverga o Verduno

 

Uva Rara
  • Boca
  • Colline Novaresi
  • Gemme
Vespolina
  • Boca
  • Bramaterra
  • Colline Novaresi
  • Coste della Sesia
  • Fara
  • Lessona
  • Sizzano
  • Gattinara
  • Gemme

Piedmont IGT Wines

Piedmont and Aosta Valley are the two only Italian regions which do not produce IGT Wines.



 
 
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