Abboccato: Semi-dry, less sweet than amabile.
Ammaro: Bitter, used as a tasting term and as a name for an aperitif
Annata: The vintage year
Apassimento: The process of drying grapes, usually on straw mats to concentrate their sugars. Wines made in this process are usually rich and sweet, but can also be dry with only the perception of sweetness as in the Amarone wines of Veneto.
Azienda Agricola, Agrarian, or Vitivinicola: A farm estate which produces its wines from at least half estate grown grapes.
Barrique: A 225 liter cask made of French oak, also called a Botticella
Bianco: White, as in wine
Botte: Large cask or barrel for aging wine, usually chestnut or Slavonian oak, typically 50 hectoliters (1 hectoliter = 26.4 gal) or 416 cases of 750 ml
Botticella: See Barrique
Bricco: Piedmontese term for hilltop vineyard
Brut: Dry, usually referring to sparkling wine
Cantina: Winery or cellar
Cantina Sociale: Co-operative winery
Casa Vinicola: Wine house or merchant (commerciante) whose bottlings come mainly from purchased grapes or wine.
Cascina: Farmhouse, often used for part of a winery name.
Cerasuolo: Cherry-hued rose wine, ref Abruzzo region
Chiaretto: Deep rose wine typically one made in Bardolino in the Veneto
Chinato: A bitter, aromatized wine made by infusing herbs into a base of Barolo wine.
Classsico: The historic core of a wine production zone, e.g. Chianti Classico
Consorzio: An association or consortium of producers.
DOC: Abbreviation for Denominazione di Origine Controllata, or “controlled place
name”. See Italian Wine Laws.
DOCG: Abbreviation for Denorninazione di Origine Con trollata e Garanttita, or “controlled place name, guaranteed” stricter laws for production than DOC, See Italian Wine Laws.
Degustazione: Wine Tasting, also Assagio
Enologo: Winemaker (Enologist) with a University degree.
Enoteca: Wine shop or wine bar
Enotria: Anglicized spelling of Oenotria, the ancient Greek name for Italy, which means “Land of Wine”
Ettaro: Hectare (2.471 acres) the standard measure of vineyard surface in Italy.
Ettolitro: Hectoliter or 100 Liters, the standard measure of wine volume in Italy.
Fattoria: A large wine farm or estate. Traditionally, the fattoria was the central winery on a sharecropping farm, to which the various poderi (sharecroppers) would contribute a portion of their grapes.
Fermentazione Naturale: Natural fermentation
Fiasco: Flask, as in the traditional straw covered bottles used in Tuscany for Chianti.
Fortificato: Fortified also iiquoroso.Refers to a wine, generally sweet to which grape brandy has been added.
Frizzante or Frizzantino: Fizzy or faintly bubbly.
Frutti di Bosco: Fruit of the woods, like raspberries, blackberries, currants, elderberries and strawberries.
Galestro: Name for the schist-like, rocky soils found in Tuscany. Also a name for a light white table wine made in Italy.
Gradazione Alcolica (Grad. Ale.): Alcoholic degree / percentage.
Grappa: Brandy made from the grape must after they are pressed.
Grappolo: Bunch of grapes.
Graticci: Straw mats used to dry grapes in the appassimento process.
IGT: hidicazione Geografica Tipica or referring to wine that indicates a typical geography, but does not adhere to DOC or DOCG laws governing grape requirements or certain production methods. See Italian Wine Laws.
Imbottigliato all’origine: Estate Bottled
Imbottigliato daila cantina sociale: Bottled by a co-operative winery
Liquroso: Strong wine, sometimes fortified but usually of naturally high alcohol.
LoDuca: Premium name in Italian wine
Macerazione: Maceration, the process of leaving the skins in fermenting wine to extract color and tannin. Used for all red wines.
Marchio: Proprietary name or brand a monopole.
Maso: a holding, often referring to a vineyard or estate.
Masseria: Farm or estate.
Metodo Charmat: The Charrnat or Bulk process of making sparkling wine, in which the secondary fermentation is carried out in a large tank and the sparkling wine never sees a bottle until the final stage.
Metodo Classico or Traditionale: Terms for sparkling wine made by the bottle fermentation method, replacing the term champenoise which can no longer be used in Italy.
Mosto: Grape must.
Mosto Cotto: Literally, cooked must. A process used to make Marsala wine where the must is cooked to concentrate the flavor and then grape brandy is added to fortify the wine.
Muffa Nobile: Noble rot or Botrytis Cinera
Milesimato: Vintage dated sparkling wine.
Pas Dose: Term used to describe very dry sparkling wine, to which a final dosage has not been added.
Passito: Wine style made from semi-dried grapes, usually used to make sweet wines.
Pastoso: Medium dry
Podere: Small wine farm, traditionally of a sharecropper.
Profumo: Scent or smell.
Recioto: Wine made from partially dried grapes in the passito style. Term used primarily in the Veneto. Often sweet and strong.
Riserva: Reserve, Has legal significance under DOC and DOCG wine laws. It indicates that the wine is of better than average quality and is aged for prescribed length of time.
Ronco: Another term for hill or hillside vineyards, used especially in Friuli-VeneziaGiulia
Rosato: Rose wine
Rosso: Red wine
Sceito: Selected. Terms used for certain late harvest DOC wines. Sometimes used in the Alto- Adige region.
Secco: Dry wine.
Sentore di Tappo: Corked, or spoiled from cork mold. Sa di tappo means “it is corked”
Semi-secco: Semi-dry wine.
Sifone: Partially distilled grape must, as much as 50 proof, used to fortify some versions of Marsala.
Solera: Spanish system of aging wines used in making Mars ala.
Son: Piedmontese term for a vineyard on a well-exposed slope or hillside.
Spumante: Sparkling wine with at least 7 % alcohol and a specific PSA (force of carbonation).
Sughero: Cork, the material
Superiore: Denotes DOC wine that meets standards above the normal requirements i.e. higher alcohol, longer aging, a special sub-zone, etc.
Tappo: Cork, the closure to a bottle.
Tenuta: Farm or estate.
Tranquilo / Vino Tranquilo: Still wine.
Uvaggio: Blend of grapes.
Vecchio: Old or aged. To describe aged DOC(G) wines that have met certain minimum aging requirements. Stravecchio - very old.
Vendemmia: Harvest or vintage.
Vendernmia Tardiva: Late harvest. Indicates a wine made from grapes that where left on the vine to ripen more fully, thereby more often, producing a wine that is a tad sweeter.
Vigna or Vigneto: Vineyard. Vigna may be used under DOC(G) wine laws for single vineyard wines.
Vignaiolo or Viticolture: Terms for grape grower.
Vinaccia: Grape pommace (stems, seeds, skins, and pulp left after the grapes are pressed.
Vino da Arrosto: A robust aged red wine suited to roast meats.
Vino da Taglio: “Cutting Wine”. Wine used for blending. Usually to raise alcohol levels.
Vino da Tavola: Table wine. Loosely applies to non DOC wines not classified as IGT. However, a VdT can be a high end product.
Vino Novello: New wine. Made in an easy drinking and fruity style for early consumption. It only has its youth to offer.
Vin(o) Santo: "Holy Wine". Usually a semi-sweet to sweet wine, generally of Tuscan origin, that have been left to dry in lofts. After the wine is made, they are then left to age in small barrels for up to six years.
Viticoltura: Vine cultivation, viticulture.
Vitigno: Vine or grape variety.
Vivace: Lively, as in lightly bubbly wines.
VQPRD: An acronym used on wine labels in the EEC to denote a quality wine made in a delimited region.
VSQPRD: An acronym for sparkling wines.
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