Discover the magic of Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G.
Why this famous Italian sparkling wine might just become your new go-to holiday bubbly
Every glass of wine comes with a story about where it came from and the people who created it. Between Venice and Dolomites, Italy, the vineyards of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene cover steep, lush green hills where grapes have been grown since Roman times. This is the area at the heart of Prosecco, led by the locally produced Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G.
The D.O.C.G. designation (denomination of controlled and guaranteed origin), similar to that used for Champagne, represents the very best of the famous Italian sparkling white wine. It is reserved for the most superior varieties, which must follow strict regulations around colour, production zone, grape varietals, and alcohol content. Each wine must pass an in-depth technical analysis and tasting to earn the D.O.C.G., which is noted on the label of each bottle.
There are only 78 wines in Italy that may use these four important letters, including Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G. It earned the designation in part for the unique area of Veneto which produces it, shaped by time and heritage. (This area was chosen as the home of Italy’s first school for winemakers in 1876.)
The landscape is so remarkable it was recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site. In 2019, the honour was given to the Prosecco Hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene for its rich winemaking history and exceptional landscape, marked by rugged slopes, valleys and grassy terraces known as ciglione. They were first created in the 16th century by those working the land to help navigate the steepness of the hills—a measure that also prevents soil erosion.
That focus on sustainability continues today with the prioritization of eliminating chemicals and agricultural practices that could negatively impact on the environment. Careful monitoring and protocols, followed by the local consortium of producers, on everything from water usage to weed management and recycling, are ongoing. In 2019, Conegliano and Valdobbiadene banned the use of glyphosate, a controversial chemical herbicide, and became the largest zone in Europe to forbid it.
Those efforts help produce high-quality golden yellow Glera grapes for Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G—a labour of love by the 3,000-plus families who tend the vines by hand in Conegliano Valdobbiadene. Because of the vineyards’ extreme slopes, the process, from pruning to harvesting, is difficult and can take up to 800 hours annually. (By comparison, 150 hours are necessary for vines on flat plains.) Passion, tradition and respect go into every bottle of Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G. And despite the high demand for it globally, production is capped at one million bottles a year to ensure quality always reigns supreme over quantity.
Those who love wine appreciate Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G.’s refined aromas and luscious mouthfeel with a hint of creaminess, along with its herbaceous, white peach and floral notes. Its delicate bubbles dance on the tongue. A more affordable option than Champagne, Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G. is ideal for the holidays, from giving toasts at the dinner table with friends and family to ringing in the new year and those “just-because” celebrations. Stock up on Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G. and mix it into cocktails, drink it on its own in elegant crystal glasses, or invite it to a festive brunch kicked off with mimosas for arriving guests.
Thanks to a harmonious balance between minerality and acidity, its flavour profile makes Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G. ideal for food pairings. It can be served alongside a crowd-pleasing charcuterie board, piled high with cured meats, cheese, fresh fruit, olives and nuts, or perhaps fresh oysters and salads like niçoise or Caprese.
Go ahead and pour a glass to go with hearty mains, like roast turkey and all its trimmings, honey-glazed ham, pasta and risotto. And when it comes to dessert, don’t put away the Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G. Its subtle sweetness works nicely with holiday favourites, like tiramisu, a classic trifle, shortbread and sugar cookies. It’s the must-have bottle to include in your festivities for its taste, diversity and long-standing traditions of care and quality infused into each delicious sip.