The Fine Art of Italian Wine

There has never been a better time to enjoy Italian wine. Whether you are a wine connoisseur, or just want to drink a glass of good vino every now and then, Italy offers something for every palate. Mr. & Mrs. Italy offer customizable Italian wine tours so you can taste and experience the wineries and vineyards we will share throughout this Italian Wine series.

If you have ever visited Italy, you know that it is covered in vineyards. They span from just below the Alps down to the heel of the boot and on to the islands of Sicily and Sardinia. Italy is home to twenty major wine-growing regions, each of which has its own culture and produces its own unique style of wine.

The French concept of terrior easily applies to Italy. Simply translated, terrior means “a sense of place.” In winemaking, terrior encompasses everything that interacts with the grape and makes it unique to its region—soil type, climate, and geography, to name just several factors. Every time you drink a wine from a specific region not only are you are immediately transported there but you are also drinking a vintage that is truly unique. A great terroir-driven Barolo, a red wine made from the Nebbiolo grape in Piedmont, will never taste like a Nebbiolo grown elsewhere. Sommeliers only blind taste classic wines that show their terrior. It’s no parlor trick; it takes years of practice to identify a wine without looking at its label, to learn which characteristics define taste as well as region. Like other great winegrowing regions, Italy offers visitors the opportunity to sample wines that show a great sense of place.

If you've traveled to Italy, you are likely familiar with the scope of its landscape. From the flowing hillsides of classic medieval Tuscan villages like Cortona to the breathtaking cliff-side vineyards of the Cinque Terre, Italy’s terrain, wine, and culture are as varied as they are beautiful. Until recent history, Italy was not a cohesive country so much as it was a collection of small self-governing regions. This is reflected in its culture and mirrored in its individual wines. For example, Trentino-Alto Adige, annexed by Italy in 1919, lists both German, and Italian as its official languages. Many of its winemaking techniques and laws differ from regions located farther south.

Wine Regions of Italy