The Italian DOC and DOCG wines (first part)

The Italian DOC and DOCG wines. (first part)


ome bottles of Italian wine bear a label around their neck, the ‘fascetta’, on which is printed the acronym ‘DOC’, or alternatively ‘DOCG’. This label is meant to certify that, after many tests and controls, the State guarantees the origin and the quality of the product.



GT, DOC and DOCG are quality assurance labels, assigned by the Italian Government to some of the wines produced in the country.

I.G.T.‘Indicazione Geografica Tipica’ (Typical Geographical Indication);
D.O.C.‘Denominazione di Origine Controllata’ (Controlled Designation of Origin);
D.O.C.G.‘Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita’ (Controlled and Guaranteed Designation of Origin);

They have great importance because they certify these products and protect them from many kinds of dangers, such as the risks of imitation and sophistication.
To get (and keep) one these labels, a wine has to meet the requirements of specific production code.

From generic to DOCG wines.

IGT, DOC and DOCG differ from each other for the complexity of the regulations set by their respective production codes.

The simplest requirements are met by IGT wines, the most strict and detailed by DOCG.

The reliability of these labels is ensured by severe tests and controls during time.

The wine production code.


s already mentioned in the previous paragraph, an Italian wine aspiring to get (and keep) a quality assurance label, has to meet all the requirements set by specific production code.
Here follows, for example, some of these requirements:
Type of grapes, type of cultivation, number of plants, etc.
Area of production of the grapes;
Type of vinification;
Characteristics of the product (color, alcohol content, acidity, etc.);
Minimum aging period (if needed);
Higher is the importance of the label, more complex and detailed are the parameters to meet.

IGT, DOC and DOCG wines in Italy.

The updated list of Italian DOCG wines (2019).


he Italian DOCG wines are at the moment 74 (Nov.2019), a number expected to grow in the next few years.
Here follows a complete list of them, divided by region of origin:

DOCG wines from Northern Italy.

North of Italy plays a fundamental role in the production of DOCG wines. Thirty-one of them are produced in just two regions, Piedmont and Veneto: this gives a good idea about the variety and the quality of the grapes from these zones.

DOCG wines from Piedmont.

Alta Langa;
Asti e Moscato d’Asti;
Cortese di Gavi;
Erbaluce di Caluso;
Barbera d’Asti;
Barbera del Monferrato sup.;
Brachetto d’Acqui;
Dolcetto di Dogliani sup.;
Dolcetto di Diano d’Alba;
Dolcetto di Ovada sup.;
Ruchè di Castagnole Monferrato;

DOCG wines from Veneto.

Colli Euganei Fior d’Arancio;
Prosecco dei Colli Asolani;
Prosecco di Conegliano / Valdobbiadene;
Recioto di Gambellara;
Recioto di Soave;
Soave superiore;
Amarone della Valpolicella;
Friularo di Bagnoli;
Bardolino superiore;
Colli di Conegliano;
Montello Rosso;
Piave Malanotte;
Recioto della Valpolicella;

DOCG wines from Lombardy.

Oltrepò Pavese metodo classico;
Scanzo o Moscato di Scanzo;
Sforzato di Valtellina;
Valtellina superiore;

DOCG wines from Friuli-Venezia Giulia.

Colli Orientali del Friuli Picolit;

DOCG wines from Emilia Romagna.

Colli Bolognesi Classico Pignoletto;
Romagna Albana;

DOCG wines from Central Italy.

Central Italy is famous worldwide for the quality of its wines. Two of them, in particular, have a very high reputation: ‘Chianti Classico’ and ‘Brunello di Montalcino’, both from Tuscany.

DOCG wines from Tuscany.

Vernaccia di San Gimignano;
Aleatico Passito dell’Elba;
Brunello di Montalcino;
Chianti Classico;
Montecucco Sangiovese;
Morellino di Scansano;
Val di Cornia Rosso;
Vino Nobile di Montepulciano;

DOCG wines from Marche.

Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi riserva;
Verdicchio di Matelica riserva;
Vernaccia di Serrapetrona;

DOCG wines from Lazio.

Cannellino di Frascati;
Frascati superiore;
Cesanese del Piglio o Piglio;

DOCG wines from Umbria.

Montefalco Sagrantino;
Torgiano Rosso riserva;

Southern Italy.

The taste and the smell of the wines from the south of Italy are greatly improved by the sun kissing its regions.

DOCG wines from Campania.

Fiano di Avellino;
Greco di Tufo;
Aglianico del Taburno;

DOCG wines from Apulia.

Castel del Monte
Bombino Nero;
Castel del Monte
Nero di Troia riserva;
Castel del Monte
Rosso riserva;
Primitivo di Manduria dolce naturale;

DOCG wines from Basilicata.

Aglianico del Vulture superiore;

DOCG wines from Abruzzo.

Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Colline Teramane;

DOCG wines from the Italian islands.

The huge potential of the Italian islands is still to be unlocked: there are no doubts that the future holds great surprises.

DOCG wines from Sicily.

Cerasuolo di Vittoria;

DOCG wines from Sardinia.

Vermentino di Gallura;

Hemingway about wine ©:1

DOP and IGP wines.


n May 2019, the Italian Legislative Decree n.61 has transposed the EU directive concerning designations of origin.
This means that in Europe:
DOC and DOCG wines are now considered as DOP (Protected Designation of Origin);
IGT wines are now considered as IGP (Protected Geographical Indication);

WebFoodCulture: only the most traditional food & wine.

The first DOCG wine.


he first wines to receive the DOCG (Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita) label, were two great Tuscan products (D.P.R. 01/07/1980):

Brunello di Montalcino.
Vino Nobile di Montepulciano.
Both of them were DOC since 1966.

The first DOC wine.


he first DOC labels (Denominazione di Origine Controllata) were assigned in 1966 to four wines:
Vernaccia di San Gimignano.
Est! Est!! Est!!! di Montefiascone.

Many claim that since the assignment to Vernaccia di San Gimignano was officialized before the others (Official Gazette of 06.05.1966, n. 110), this wine should be considered the first Italian DOC.

Some other people argue that, in truth, the very first was Marsala. Even if this may seem quite odd, from a certain point of view it could be true. It’s important to remember that, since the beginning of its commercialization, this famous Sicilian wine was the victim of many attempts of imitation: that’s why in 1931, a Ministerial Decree specified its characteristics, designating specifically its zone of production. This decree can be considered an early form of the modern DOC designation.

Generic, varietal and vintage wines.


he IGP, DOC and DOCG labels certify the place of origin of Italian wines. In this country many other wines don’t have a specific designation: they’re the ‘generic wines’, once known as ‘table wines’ (‘vini da tavola’).
There are two types of them:
Varietal wines (‘vini varietali’): wines made primarily with a single grape variety (85%).
Vintage wines (‘vini d’annata’): wines made primarily with grapes from the same year (85%).

In the second part, a complete list of the DOC wines.

The images bearing the logo ‘webfoodculture’ are copyrighted.

The following images are published courtesy of Mrs.Antonella Chiara:

img-03 – Marsala, windmill near the salt flats;

The following images are public domain:

img-01 (**) – Ernest Hemingway in Kenya, 1954, J.F.Kennedy Pres. Library and Museum (Wikipedia Link)
img-02 (*) – Fruit, A.Mucha, 1897 (Wikipedia Link) {PD-US}

(*) The copyright of this image has expired.
(**) Image released in public domain by its author.