We recently shared with you some of the best white wines to use for cooking, which led to some discussion on Italian wines, and if you’re like most people, you probably think of Italian white wines as being light and refreshing. While that’s certainly true of many of them, there’s a lot more to Italian white wines than that. In fact, there are all sorts of different types of Italian white wines, each with its own unique flavor and personality. So if you’re looking for a good Italian white wine to drink, what should you choose?
10 of the Most Famous Italian Wine Regions
Italy is home to many beautiful vineyards and wineries. The country’s wine industry is one of its most famous exports.
There are over 1,000 different Italian wines, ranging from sweet dessert wines to dry reds and whites.
Here are 10 of Italy’s most famous wine regions:
This region produces mostly white wines, such as Chianti Classico and Brunello di Montalcino.
Sardinia is known for its fortified wines, such as Cannonau and Vermentino.
This region produces mainly red wines, such as Amarone Della Valpolicella and Recioto Della Valpolicella.
Friuli Venezia Giulia
This region produces primarily red wines, such as Pinot Nero and Merlot.
This region produces mostly dry red wines, such as Barolo and Barbaresco.
This region produces primarily sparkling wines, such as Prosecco.
This region produces mostly rosé wines, such as Rosso del Conte and Moscato Giallo.
This region produces mainly sweet wines, such as Passito di Pantelleria and Muscat Canelli.
This region produces mainly white wines, such as Trebbiano d’Abruzzo and Malvasia Bianca.
This region produces mainly sparkling wines, such as Moscato Giallo and Moscato di Pantelleria.
Italian wine types
The Italian wine regions are divided into eight geographical areas, each with its specific characteristics. Each of these has a different climate and soil type, which gives rise to the various grape varieties grown there, most of which are indigenous to that area.
The main differences between the Iwine regions can be seen by looking at their official names. For example, Tuscany comprises three wine regions: Tuscan Maremma, Tuscan Colle aVal D’Elsa, and Tuscan Maremma Occidentale. These three regions have completely different climates, making them produce very different grapes and wine styles.
Each of these regions also has its specialties. Some of the more notable ones include:
Chianti Classico – This is the most well-known wine produced in Tuscany. It is usually served chilled or slightly warmed.
Sangiovese – This is the most widely planted varietal in all of Italy. Its high acidity makes it perfect for blending with other grape varietals.
Amarone Della Valpolicella – This is a scarce and expensive wine. It is made from 100% Corvina grapes and is aged for at least two years before release.
Prosecco – This is a light, often sparkling wine. It is made primarily from Glera grapes.
Vin Santo – Vin santo is a sweet wine made from dried grapes. It is only available during certain times of the year.
Rosato – A rose wine similar to Prosecco but doesn’t contain any residual sugar.
So if you’re planning on visiting one of the many wineries in Italy, make sure you know what kind of wine you like! If you want something fruity, then look for a Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc. If you prefer something sweet, try a Riesling or a Moscato. And if you want something smooth and elegant, go for a Pinot Noir or a Cabernet Franc.
But where do you start? There’s so much choice out there! You could spend months trying every single wine under the sun. Or you could take our advice and stick to the basics. Here are some of the most famous Italian wine types:
Pinot Nero/Nero d’Avola (Puglia)
Cabernet Sauvignon (Tuscany)
Merlot (Emilia Romagna)
Cabernet Franc (Friuli Venezia Giulia)
Fumé Blanc (Savoy)
Riesling (Alto Adige)
Muscat Canelli (Friuli Venezie Giulia)
Sauvignon Blanc (Lombardy)
So now that you’ve got your basic knowledge about Italian wines down, let’s get onto the fun part: tasting them!
Of course, we recommend starting with a glass of prosecco because it goes perfectly with almost anything. But if you’d instead drink something else, here are some suggestions:
If you’re feeling adventurous, try a Rosato or a Vin Santo. They’re both delicious and refreshing.
Try a white wine such as a Chardonnay for something a little less sweet.
To finish things off nicely, consider a bottle of Amarone Della Valpolicella a rich red wine that will leave you wanting more.
What Is A Good Italian White Wine?
The Absolute Best Italian White Wines To Try
Blanc de Morgex et de La Salle
Blanc de Morgex et de La Salle is located in the valley of Aosta and produces crisp, savory white wine from high-altitude grapes. These grapes make wines with mineral notes reminiscent of Alpine herbs and hay.
Production is tiny. While Valle d’Aosta Blanc de Morgex et de La Salle is exported to the U.S., it may be hard to find, but it’s well worth hunting down. The producers below are imported to the U.S. via Vinity Wine Company, Cream Wine Company, and Jan D’Amore Wines. Production is minimal. While Valle d’Aosta Blanc de Morgex et de La Salle is exported to the U.S., it might be challenging to get hold of them, but it’s well worth seeking out.
Castelli di Jesi and Matelica
Marche’s premier white wines come from two different regions, both in Italy. The best wines of this region are textured, full-bodied wines that age well. Their high acidity and intense citrus notes make them excellent for drinking young or waiting for years to mature.
A great Chardonnay wine from the Langhe region. It’s a harmonious wine with a pleasant fruit, flowers, and herbs aroma. It pairs perfectly with seafood dishes and pasta.
Collio and Colli Orientali
The Friuli region should be the destination for top-quality wines. Cellars of the Collio and Colli Orientali are among the most innovative and technologically advanced in Italy. Long-lived super-white blends of native Italian and foreign grape varieties will impress even those jaded by wine. Friuli is also the birthplace of the natural wine movement. The orange wines of the region are great for people looking to learn more about what happens when white wine is made with skin contact. These unusual wines may not appeal to everyone, but they will undoubtedly spark exciting conversations.
The dry white wines from Italy are made with different grapes. This wine is made using a combination of different types of grapes. These include Garganega, Trebbano, Friulano, Bianca, Trebbiano Toscana, Malvasia, Pinot Bianco and Chardonnay. Dry whites are often bright and fresh with citrus notes. Some producers add herbs or spices to make this wine even better.
Falanghina is an Italian white grape variety cultivated in the Campania region since ancient times. Its fame has led to spread throughout almost the whole area. This white wine is ideal, combined with Mediterranean dishes such as appetizers, rice, pasta, seafood, and legumes soup. However, it is equally recommended with grilled or fried fresh fish and white meat. Soft or young goat cheese from the Campania region and buffalo mozzarella are perfect matches.
A sparkling wine produced in Italy. It uses Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes. It’s usually produced without added sugar, making it an excellent alternative for those who love extra-dry Champagne. It’s also an excellent alternative for those looking for an affordable option to Champagne.
Straw-colored wine is a good choice for cheese or seafood. It pairs well with Tonnarelli Cacio E Pepe, a fresh cheese made out of sheep milk.
The grapes used to make Friulano come from France, but the wine is made in Friuli, in northeast Italy. The wines are top-rated among Italians because they’re inexpensive and easy to drink. In addition, it’s a sweet wine that tastes delicious when paired with foods such as prosciutto and cheese.
Friuli Colli Orientali
This wine pairs well with soups and rice dishes. It has a strong taste of cedar and exotic fruits. Hay and stones add a hint of freshness to this wine.
Greco di Tufo
This wine has tastes of white blossom, dried apricots, and turned earth. It’s crisp, bone dry, and astringent at first sips. Then the flavor mellows into sweet green apples and has a slightly tannic finish. Pair this wine with buffalo mozzarella and tomatoes or grilled fish with lemon and extra virgin olive oil.
Lugana is a sweet wine made with grapes grown in the northern part of Italy near Venice. This region produces many wines, including reds, rosés, whites, and sparkling varieties. Lugana is a crisp wine with an enticing bouquet and flavors of citrus, white stone fruits, and almonds.
Pinot Bianco Still
A wine with a good structure. Soft and pleasant. It is made from grapes grown in Friuli-Venezja Giulia, Trentino Alto Adige, and Franiciacorta. The color of this wine is straw yellow. It has a greenish to golden reflection. This Italian white wine also has an aromatic fruitiness. Pinot Bianco works well with white meats, fish-based main dishes, light-cured meats, fresh or medium-aged cheese.
Pinot Grigio is a light and refreshing white wine perfect for seafood dishes or salads. In the northern part of Italy, this type of wine is made from organically-grown grapes without pesticides and synthetic chemicals. Organic Pinot Grigio comes from the Veneto region.
Prosecco Conegliano Valdobbiadene
Prosecco is a sparkling white wine from the Veneto region of northern Italy. It is made with the traditional carbonic maceration method (the same method used by Champagne). The most famous producer of prosecco is Cantina di Fiascherino, located in the town of Soave near Lake Garda. However, you can also enjoy prosecco in other countries like France, Germany, Austria, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada, Japan, and Chile.
It tastes like peaches, pears, lavenders, and herbs. It pairs well with fish in any cooking method. This wine will go well with appetizers, eggs, quiche, and white meat with sauces. Thanks to its thick skins, when made with prolonged skin contact and matured in large oak barrels, Ribolla Gialla produces more complexity, with a deep depth of flavors including dried fruits, honeyed nuts, and minerals.
Soave is an excellent wine. It is masculine yet refined, with flavors of chamomile tea, green apples, baked pears, nuts, and herbs. It pairs well with veal scaloppini, pasta dishes, and roast chicken.
It’s multi-layer, structured, intense, and tannic. These characteristics don’t seem to come from winemakers. Instead, they’re inherent characteristics of the grape. It pairs well with veal chops with wild mushrooms, grilled chicken breast, and meat-filled ravioli with butter and sage.
Trebbiano d’Abruzzo Trebbiano
A young, bright, fruity Italian dry white wine. It is usually paired with appetizers, first courses, pasta, soup, and cheese. It is sometimes used as an alternative to Chardonnay.
The most famous sparkling wines come from the Marche region (also known as Emilia Romagna) in Italy. However, many other areas produce sparkling wines too. This is a sparkling wine with a strong aroma. It has a mild flavor, but it has a robust structure. It is perfect for dishes that include fish and vegetable ingredients. It is a light-bodied wine that combines seafood, appetizers, and salads.
Vermentino is often described as having a delicate flavor and is usually light-colored. This style of wine pairs well with seafood, especially grilled or broiled fish and shellfish.
Vernaccia di San Gimignano
The name of Vernaccio di San Gimignano means “of San Gimignano” (the town in Italy). This is the most famous wine in the Tuscany region. It is produced using the native varietal called Sangiovese. It is a light dry white wine with a pale straw colour. It has a fresh, fruity, flowery aroma. Aftertaste is almond. It is perfect for seafood, especially shellfish, cheese, and roasted vegetables.
Vino Santo and Vin
SantoItaly’s dessert wines rank amongst the most delicious in the world. Most of these wines are produced using the passito method, which concentrates grape sugars, resulting in sweet, honey-like wines balanced by natural acidities. These wines are known as Passito wines, and some of the finest examples come from the regions of Trentino and Tuscany. A few other notable examples include Vin Santo from Sicily, Vino Santo from Piedmont, and Vin Santo from Friuli-Venezia Giulia.
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s So Special About Italian White Wine?
It’s a question I get asked all the time. The short answer is that it’s the most widely consumed white wine globally and has been for years.
But there are so many varieties of white wine you should be trying, and they also vary wildly in price. To help you navigate through them, here are my favorite inexpensive wines, priced $10 or less per bottle:
• Soave ($8.99) – Dry, crisp, and refreshing! Excellent with appetizers like fried mozzarella sticks or saucy little morsels like calamari.
• Fiano ($9.49) – Light, fragrant, and low on alcohol. Perfect with soups, stews, and rich sauces.
• Pinot Grigio ($9.69) – Crisp, light, and refreshing. Best enjoyed when you want something more substantial than just a glass of wine. Try it with giant burgers, juicy steaks, or creamy risottos.
What white wine is Italy known for?
The best white wines from Tuscany and Piedmont regions are made from Chardonnay grapes. Other popular white wines include Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, and Moscato.
What Italian white wine is dry?
If am interested in buying a bottle of Italian white wine that should be “dry” but not too sweet. My preference would be to have something like Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, Chianti Classico or Brunello di Montalcino.
What is the best-known white wine of Tuscany?
The best-known white wine of Italy is Chianti Classico from Tuscany. This region has been producing quality wines since the Middle Ages when they were exported to France. Chianti Classico is made from Sangiovese grapes grown in the area around Florence.
What term is used for Italian sparkling wines?
Sparkling wine is called prosecco in Italy. Prosecco is produced from grapes grown in the Veneto region, where it has been made for centuries. The name comes from the Latin word “prosperare,” which means “to flourish.” Prosecco is known for its effervescent qualities and lively taste.
So what makes Italian white wine so special? There are many factors, but some of the most important include the unique climate and soil conditions in different parts of Italy, as well as the long history of winemaking in the country. And with so many different types and styles of white wine to choose from, there’s something for everyone. If you haven’t already tried an Italian white wine, we recommend starting with one of our top 10 picks. And if you’re looking for a keto-friendly option, check out our article on the best white wines for keto dieters. Buon appetito!