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The best sweet wines of Italy

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Written by EFW Staff

Learn to recognize the best Italian Wines

It is better to know how to recognize the Italian sweet wines, in the wide Italian wine productions. Sweet wines, in fact, have particular aromatic and organoleptic characteristics, which make them easily recognizable to the less expert as well. In Italy, different types of wines are produced, they differ, above all, in the making process of the grapes. Each region has its own techniques, which make the sweet wines on the market really different among them.

The main types of Italian sweet wines

We can identify a few main types of sweet wines. The natural sweet wines are made with grapes of aromatic varieties such as bracchetto or moscato, in which the fermentation is stopped, in order to enhance the sugary and sweet taste. Then, there are the sweet wine with a late grape harvest, which maintain a high concentration of sugar that cover the sourness of the product.
Passito wines, instead, are made with grapes, which are dried out either on the plant itself or on mats after the harvest. We can find, then, wines with mould that are wines which grapes are subjected to the mould in order to enhance the quantity of sugar in the grapes. Finally, among the Italian sweet wines, there are the liquorish wines, realized adding alcohol or cooked must.
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Sweet wines of the North part of Italy

Northern Italy gives us a wide range of high quality sweet wines. Piedmont boasts Moscato d’Asti, Passito di Moscato, Loazzolo and Malvasia di Casorzo. In Lombardy you can drink Moscato di Scanzo and Sangue di Giuda whereas Tuscany produces great white sweet wines like Vin Santo and Moscadello.
Moving to Trentino-Alto Adige, instead, there are sweet wines like Vin Santo, the same name of the Tuscan one, another regional wine is the Passito Gewurztraminer. Recioto della Valpolicella, Recioto di Soave, Moscato Bianco and Custoza are bottled in Veneto. In Friuli Venezia Giulia there are great sweet wines, among them Passito Ramandolo, Verduzzo and Picolit.

The best sweet wines of Central Italy

In the small regions of Central Italy you can taste extraordinary sweet wines. For example in Marche, between Maerata and Ancona, there is the Verdicchio of the Jesi’s Castles, a white sweet wine with a dry taste and a slightly bitter aftertaste. Umbria produces the red wine Montefalco Sagrantino Passito and Muffato whereas in Lazio it is possible to enjoy sweet wines like Gradoli and Muffo Lazio.

The best Italian sweet wines of Southern Italy

The dessert wines are widely spread in the South of Italy as well. The amazing Campania, in fact, realize extraordinary wines like Falanghina, Phileno Passito, Sannio Moscato and Castel San Lorenzo Moscato. In Puglia, you can find great sweet wines such as Primitivo, Moscato di Trani and Aleatico di Puglia.
In Sicily, instead, there are precious sweet wines like the famous Marsala with its topaz colour and a strong fruity taste. Other Sicilian sweet wines are Moscato di Siracusa, Malvasia delle Lipari and Passito di Pantelleria.

How to serve and pair Italian sweet wines

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The sweet Italian wines, traditionally, should be served at a temperature between 10 and 18°. The right glasses are not so big because these wines should to be sipped slowly to appreciate all their characteristics. It is sufficient to chose simple stem glasses with a long and narrow shape. Talking about the pairings, the sweet wines are perfect with pastries and desserts, but also with aged cheeses and meat.
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EFW Staff