Lazio

Lazio

Lazio is dominated by its, and probably Italy’s, most famous city, Rome. The Eternal City overshadows the surrounding region and is such a powerhouse, that it accounts for a large portion of the consumption of local wines. Relatively few of Lazio’s wines leave the country as they are happily consumed in busy osterie and trattorie in and around Rome. As there is no imperative to attract an international market many producers are happy to generate perfectly pleasant but simple wine – of course with notable exceptions.

For many, knowledge of Lazio’s most famous wine, Frascati, may be confined to memories of squat bottles – sometimes frosted, sometimes strung in a net of fuse-gauge wire – of undistinguished wine. It would be nice to say that this is a dated or false impression, however this would be a hard position to defend. The better Frascatis will be all, or almost all, Malvasia, eschewing the often bland Trebbiano, and, indeed, can also include a small measure of international grapes to boost the flavour profile. ...READ MORE

Lazio

Lazio is dominated by its, and probably Italy’s, most famous city, Rome. The Eternal City overshadows the surrounding region and is such a powerhouse, that it accounts for a large portion of the consumption of local wines. Relatively few of Lazio’s wines leave the country as they are happily consumed in busy osterie and trattorie in and around Rome. As there is no imperative to attract an international market many producers are happy to generate perfectly pleasant but simple wine – of course with notable exceptions.

For many, knowledge of Lazio’s most famous wine, Frascati, may be confined to memories of squat bottles – sometimes frosted, sometimes strung in a net of fuse-gauge wire – of undistinguished wine. It would be nice to say that this is a dated or false impression, however this would be a hard position to defend. The better Frascatis will be all, or almost all, Malvasia, eschewing the often bland Trebbiano, and, indeed, can also include a small measure of international grapes to boost the flavour profile. Outside of Frascati – including the historically famous Est!! Est!! Est!! di Montefiascone – much of Lazio is given to the production of white wine, with the aforementioned varieties doing the bulk of the work and the excitement levels similarly sedate.

In red wine production – which accounts for only 20% of output – there has been a modern tendency to plant the Bordeaux varieties with encouraging degrees of success. For the traditionalist, the indigenous variety Cesanese is of most interest, producing deeply flavoured wines of great character. Although perhaps not receiving due attention, it is not hard to imagine that Cesanese could be used to champion a currently underachieving wine region.

Principal denominations: Cesanese del Piglio DOCG, Colli Albani DOC, Est! Est!! Est!!! di Montefiascone DOC, Frascati DOC (Superiore DOCG), Nettuno DOC, Orvieto DOC, Roma DOC
Important white varieties: Grechetto, Malvasia, Trebbiano
Important red varieties: Cesanese

 

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