ITALIA, dolce Italia! What a land. Where else can you find a land so rich and diverse in landscape, in culture, in food and in wine! It is indeed challenging to even try to depict Italy in words….
Although vines had been cultivated from the wild vitis vinifera grape since the dawn of man, it wasn't until the Greek colonization that wine-making flourished. In fact, viticulture was initially brought to Sicily and southern Italy by the Greeks, and was well-established when the extensive Greek colonization transpired around 800 BC. It was during the Roman defeat of the Carthaginians - acknowledged masters of wine-making - in the 2nd century BC that Italian wine production began to further develop.
Today Italy comprises twenty different Wine regions. A better understanding of Italian wine can only come with a better understanding of the vast differences between the regions, both in landscape, history, cuisine and indigenous grapes.
The long latitudinal range of the country permits wine growing from the majestic Dolomites to the beautiful crystal-clear waters of the South, almost within sight of Africa.
The extensive mountains and foothills which meet the waters – sometimes in dramatic drops - of the three seas that surround Italy provide many altitudes for grape growing and an infinite variety of micro-climates and soil conditions. In fact, Italy is home to more indigenous grape varieties than any other country in the World.