Liguria is a wine region located in the northwest of Italy, along with the country’s famed Italian Riviera. To the north of Liguria is Piedmont; to the west are the Alps and Provence; to the east are the Apennines and Emilia-Romagna, and to the south is the small border with Tuscany. Liguria is a long and thin region with rugged terrain, including plenty of steep cliffs and stunning views.
The Liguria wine region is known for its light white wines, especially those from Bosco, Albarola and Vermentino (known locally as “Pigato” for the pigmented colors that appear on the mature grapes). Two red grape varietals – Rossesse and Ormeasco (similar to the Dolcetto of Piedmont) – can be found here as well. The Rossesse wines of Piedmont are notably particularly for being fruity and spicy. Overall, white wines account for 75% of total wine production in Piedmont.
In terms of winemaking, the rugged terrain and relatively poor soil quality introduce a number of challenges. Vineyards are often planted along hills with steep slopes, where it can be difficult to maintain them. Of all the wine regions of Italy, Liguria has the second-lowest wine output, despite its Mediterranean-influenced climate.
Winemaking in Liguria has been going on for nearly 2500 years – back to the days of the ancient Etruscans and Greeks. During the Roman era, the region of Cinque Terre (“Five Lands”) was notable for its winemaking traditions. Today, Cinque Terre is arguably the most important DOC in Liguria. It has cliffside vineyards overlooking tiny fishing villages.
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