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The past fifty years have witnessed a Renaissance in the wines of Abruzzo. Once focused more on quantity than quality, with viniculture sidelined for centuries by population decline, Abruzzo wine producers are reviving winemaking traditions dating back to the sixth century and, in combination with modernization efforts, are lifting Abruzzo wines to heights that parallel the region’s peaks.

Located on the East Adriatic coast, Abruzzo is lush and rugged with a mountainous landscape and lengthy coastline glittering green with national parks. It’s diverse terroir, abundance of sunshine and generous rainfall, alongside cool mountain air currents and altitudinal temperature variation make Abruzzo a veritable haven for grape growing. Indeed, given its extraordinary solar exposure and proximity to both the Adriatic coast and Gran Sasso (one of Italy’s highest peaks), it’s no wonder Abruzzo is Italy’s fifth largest wine producer.

The region’s quality-focused efforts have largely been driven by the endeavours of cooperative wineries. Reducing yield per hectare, rigorous quality checks and investment in modern winemaking techniques are just a few examples of how Abruzzo wine producers are working to rejuvenate the reputation of this historic region.

Trebbiano and Montepulciano play a significant role in defining Abruzzo white and red wines respectively, the latter bursting with wild herbs, violets and a depth of red and blue fruits, brightened up with zingy acids and a salty minerality imparted by significant day-to-night temperature variations and technology that ensures the utmost quality control. Powerful enough, so legend has it, to revive the soldiers of Hannibal on their epic journey across the alps.

Pecorino thrives as the third key native grape variety continuing the reputation for wickedly fresh Abruzzo wines. Harvesting from the foothills of Gran Sasso’s glacial mountain range Cataldi Madonna creates a typically lively Abruzzo white wine – lauded one of Italy’s greatest white wines.

It’s time to reap the rewards of this Renaissance.

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