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The Colli Bolognesi

The hills south and west of Bologna, in the center of the Region, have always yielded fine wines. Altitudes reach 450 meters above sea level (Monte San Pietro), and the terrains and microclimates vary considerably.

The Consorzio Vini Colli Bolognesi, founded in 1971 to oversee the area and promote the wines, represents the producers in the many Communes of the area.

Colli Bolognesi wine


There are many DOC wines: the whites range from Sauvignon Blanc through Pinot Bianco, Riesling Italico, and Chardonnay, while the reds include Barbera, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. Many of the allochthonous varietals (beginning with Cabernet Sauvignon), have adapted very well and produce excellent results.


If one is interested in the traditional varietals, the most important is certainly Pignoletto, an autochthonous grape that yields a number of very distinctive white wines. Pignoletto's history begins with Pliny the Elder, who mentioned it in the Ist Century BC, saying "Pino Leto, not sweet enough to be good".


Pignoletto's present history began in 1985, with the establishment of the DOC and renewed passion on the part of many winemakers, who have made it their flagship wine.


Indeed, even though Pignoletto is grown in other parts of Emilia-Romagna, the heart of its production remains the hills south of Bologna.


Here the annual production is about 128,000 bottles (there are 116 wineries in the DOC), most of which are distributed locally, even though interest in this fresh, dry white blessed with a delicate bouquet is slowly increasing beyond the appellation's borders.


A number of kinds of Pignoletto are made: The most classic is sparkling, but it can also be still, and reach, in the Superiore variant, a natural alcohol content of 12%. In recent years good results have also been obtained by fermenting Pignoletto after drying the grapes.

Last modified Dec 27, 2013

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