Italian Native Vines: A patrimony to Safeguard and Enjoy
Loris Scagliarini - June 11, 2005
It has been thanks to a few brave, adventurous, farsighted vintners and winemakers in love with the land and its fruits that, during the last ten years or so, a large number of Italian ancient native vines, once believed extinct, or close to extinction, were brought back to life and, once again, made into wine as it was made by their ancestors.
From the far north, where the the Casa Vinicola Masi founded the Centro Sperimentale per le Uve Autoctone del Triveneto (Experimental Center for Native Grapes of the Triveneto (Triveneto defines the Italian North Eastern regions of Trentino-Alto Adige, Friuli-Venezia Giula, and Veneto) in Valpolicella, to the extreme south in Sicily, ancient grapes are once again cultivated and proudly made into unique wines that offer character and strong links to the lands where they come from.
There's a sense of history and pride in what's currently going on in part of the Italian wine world. The recent success of Naples' Vitigno Italia (Vineyard Italy), the first big trade show ever held in southern Italy, and dedicated exclusively to Italian ancient and native vines, shows that the path opened by some hard-headed, proud producers is one to follow.
At my request, Rosa D'Ancona, an Italian journalist and wine expert took it upon herself to lead our readers in an interesting journey across Italy, and region by region, introduce the roughly 350 Italian natives vines currently registered and used to make wine. Starting from her native Sicily, she will uncover all the ancient native grapes, tell us briefly about their history, characteristics and in which major wines said grapes are used.
The articles will be published exclusively in Italian-Flavor.com, the site dedicated to introducing quality Italian wines and specialty foods to foreign importers, wholesalers, resellers, trade journalists, collectors, restaurateurs and wine lovers worldwide. The introduction to the series, 'Vitigni Autoctoni (Italian Native Vines): Witness to the Past and Protagonists of the Future' is available now, don't miss it.