Reading an Italian Wine Label

Although most common of wine labels have a rectangular shape, some producers use more creative shapes and, in some cases, even break the label into two separate parts!

Strangely enough, the information printed on the wine label sometimes is of little help in understanding the kind of wine that one is drinking. This is especially true when our customers are novice, who might not be familiar with the definitions used in enology, or when the consumer is a non-Italian speaking is purchasing an Italian wine abroad.

Here you will find a reference key to common information printed on all Italian wine label. We hope this elementary approacht will be helpful when you venture into the Italian section of a wine shop.

To explain our short supplement, we have chosen three labels that are different in shape as well as in the amount of information printed on them.
To provide a common reference key, we have numbered the data printed on the 1998 Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Riserva Bosco label, the one that includes the greatest amount of information from 1 to 11. On the other two labels we have skipped the numbers for which no information is provided. Thus, the 2000 Korem Isola dei Nuraghi label from Argiolas is missing numbers 3 and 11, while the 1998 Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Conte di Bregonzo label is missing numbers 6, 10 and 11.

1. Type of wine
2. Wine appellation
3. Additional denomination
4. Vintage year
5. Name of the wine
6. Color of the wine
7. Quantity in milliliters
8. Alcohol content by volume
9. Nation of origin (in our case, obviously Italy)
10. Bottling company data
11. Importer (this information is obviously missing from labels of Italian wines purchased in Italy).



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