Europe & Britain | Inspiration

The Prosecco wine region: Veneto's best kept secret

Just 50km north of Venice in the Treviso province, a glowing green paradise sits undiscovered. Crumbling stucco buildings cling to vertical hills. Bright vineyards run over rippling hills. Delicate sunsets kiss the Alps’ foothills. And the crisp crack of a Prosecco cork fills the air. Time for taste. Welcome to the Prosecco wine region: a 66km stretch of wine-making terroir between the north-eastern towns of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene – where Italy’s favourite sparkling wine, Prosecco, is exclusively made.

What is prosecco and how is it made?

Ah… prosecco. That refreshing and joyful sip. A delicious balance of sweetness and acidity, fruity and floral. Any combination of peach, apple, honey, pear and floral notes can dance across the tongue at any second. The perfect lunch time pick-me-up or evening Bellini cocktail.

Prosecco is a sparkling white wine made from at least 85% Glera grape. (Any less and it cannot be classified as prosecco). Between 8.5% and 12.5% alcoholic strength, it can be frizzante (fizzy) or spumante (fully sparkling) – ranging from Extra brut (very dry) to demi-sec (sweet) in sweetness.

What is special about the prosecco wine region?

prosecco wine region, Veneto

Prosecco making in the Conegliano and Valdobbiadene hills dates back to the 18th century. Recently hailed as a UNESCO World Heritage site (in 2019), its cultural heritage is worth cherishing. Everything in these wall-like hills is done by hand. Each grape is picked with precision. Consequently, the prosecco created here are the world’s best. Top tip: look for the ‘DOCG’ (Denominazione di Origine Controllata Garantita) sticker on the bottle, which means it’s met the highest guidelines for Italian wine.

At 300 metres above sea level, the winemaking conditions are perfect: a temperate climate (with a mix of rain showers and sunshine) hitting the limestone, clay, and sandstone mixed-soil, whose slight acidity is catered for delicious sparkling wine production.

For inquisitive and thirsty who (rightly) wish to explore north of Venice, here are two prosecco wine region attractions that will send your senses wild.

The ‘Strada del Prosecco’ (Prosecco road)

Stretching east-to-west from Conegliano to Valdobbiadene, the Strada del Prosecco (or ‘Prosecco road’) is an enchanting 47km drive through a sea of green. Feel your jaw drop as you snake through 100 wineries, crumbling castles, churches, farms, medieval towns frozen in time. This road will leave you speechless within seconds; and yes… that definitely calls for a glass.

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In a cosy 1 kilometre pocket of hilly vineyards, the Cartizze area in the Valdobbiadene municipality produces premium ‘Prosecco DOCG Superiore di Cartizze’. Widely regarded as the most pristine prosecco in Italy: the Grand Cru. This is because its Grepa grape vines sit on a southwestern slope – allowing plenty of sun exposure. While a gentle breeze from the nearby mountains keeps the vines refreshed.

Osteria Senz’oste

Nestled in Valdobbiadene’s vineyards, Osteria Senz’oste a unique concept: it has no absolutely no staff. This 19th-century stone and brick farmhouse invites visitors to take a sun-kissed seat overlooking sprawling vineyards, which rise and fall over soaring hills. While you help yourself to freshly baked bread, olive oil, cold meats and cheeses. And of course, world-class prosecco available by the magnum. Just don’t forget to put your money in the jar as you leave… we told you it was authentic.

Did you enjoy reading about the prosecco wine region? Tell us what part you’d like to visit first in the comments below.

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