There’s an Italian wine proverb — nella botte piccola c’è il vino buono. It means: “In small barrels, there’s good wine.” A very Italian way of saying good things come in small packages. Vineyards in Italy have long been producing small batch wines that are only available to locals, the wine-producers themselves, or lucky visitors to the area. Let’s take a look at some unique Italian wines that are only available on a visit to Italy.
Tuscany - Variazioni in Rosso dell’Ornellaia
The most internationally famous area of Italy wine country, Tuscany has a bit of something for every wine lover. Many famous books and films feature visitors and Tuscans alike enjoying some of the best food and wine the world has to offer. When it comes to Tuscany wine tours are everywhere, but many Tuscan wines can be found in the far-flung corners of the globe.
Some of Tuscany’s most spectacular wines can be sampled at Variazioni in Rosso dell’Ornellaia, which you can only purchase in the winery’s tasting centre in Bolgheri. Famed for its production of Super Tuscan wine, Ornellaia has many small-batch products on offer, only available for sale in its tasting rooms. Only visitors to the estate will have the opportunity to sample and purchase this unique vintage with notes of blackberry and smoke. If you’re looking for Tuscany wine tours, we’d highly recommend Ornellaia for their many limited edition wines available only on site.
Sicily - Nero D’Avola from Curto Winery
Nero D’Avola is a jewel of Sicilian wine, an ancient wine that thrives in the hot, dry areas on the south of the island. Rugged and bold, this name of this wine comes from a grape with skin is dark it’s nearly black. Though it has been in production for hundreds of years, Nero D’Avola has recently been taking its place as a wine of international importance.
Consider finding Nero D’Avola near its source at the Curto Winery in the Ispica region of south-east Sicily. Their Eloro D.O.C. is considered one of the top wines of using this grape, with an 85% minimum amount of Nero D’Avola to be found in the wine. Some of their best bottles are best tasted at the winery directly, and they’re open for wine tours and tastings.
Abruzzo - Montepulciano d'Abruzzo from Umani Ronchi
Italy wine tours allow you the opportunity to discover some under-the-radar bottles, Montepulciano d'Abruzzo being no exception. Abruzzo is only a short journey from Venice, located along the Adriatic Coast, where the cool breeze meeting mountain slopes makes an excellent climate for wines.
Umani Ronchi’s Montepulciano d'Abruzzo grows in a mixture of sand and clay, producing a medium-bodied wine with hints of black cherry, strawberry, and some spicy notes at the finish. This winery has three cellars, one for each wine-producing region it’s in, including Abruzzo. You can stop by for a tour; they have limited runs of various wines, including a selection of sparkling varieties, that can only be found on site.
Lazio (Rome) - Fioranello from Fattoria di Fiorano
Lastly, we turn to Fattoria di Fiorano, a legendary winery owned at one time by a prince, only a quick 20-minute drive or train journey from the center of Rome. From the mid-40s to 1995 this winery was producing celebrated bottles that Italy’s top wine critics raved over. After 1995 the site fell into decline for wine production (the prince even tried to convert it into a hotel site).
Fiorano has been slowly returning to its former glory under the hand of Alessia Antinori. the prince’s granddaughter, who comes from the Marchesi Antinori winemaking dynasty.
A student of oenology, Antinori has been working on Fioranello, a limited edition wine that’s bringing her vineyards back to public attention. The wine is currently being sold in the region to historical clients of the winery… and to visitors lucky enough to make the trip to her vineyards.
Start planning your wine adventure
If you’re planning a visit to Italy for wine lovers, you’ll want to visit the Italian wine regions that produce these unique grapes. It’s one way of guaranteeing your Italian adventure will be good to the last drop.