Allegrini 2024

Great Italian classics and territories with the exception of Champagne: holiday trends in wine shops

Barolo, Brunello, Amarone, Bolgheri are the top red wines, while classic method bubbles are doing well
The cellar of Antica Bottega del Vino in Verona, temple of Italian wine

The great Italian classics, which never betray, whether they are chosen for drinking at the table with friends and family or as gifts, with an obvious influence of “territoriality” with respect to the place of purchase (especially in the South and Islands), with the most popular being Barolo, Brunello di Montalcino, Amarone della Valpolicella and Bolgheri, but also many Italian sparkling wines, especially Metodo Classico, Franciacorta and Trentodoc in the lead, with “excursions” to the Alta Langa, without forgetting Prosecco, especially in the Conegliano Valdobbiadene Docg version, but also a strong return of Champagne, especially in the cities to toast these holidays still hampered by the pandemic, which does not prevent, however, to dream and give oneself a moment of lightness and happiness at least in the glass. These are the most popular denominations for the end-of-year festivities according to the sentiment gathered by WineNews among some of the most prestigious wine shops throughout Italy (awarded the “Tre Cavatappi” by the guide “Enoteche d’Italia 2021” by Gambero Rosso).
So it’s no surprise that in Piedmont, from Turin, “Casa del Barolo” reports Barolo, Barbaresco and Champagne among the most popular bubbles (while among Italians the most popular are Alta Langa and Franciacorta), while in Verona, “capital of Valpolicella”, at the Antica Bottega del Vino (owned by the Famiglie Storiche, the thirteen great Amarone wineries), the podium is still held by His Majesty Barolo, the home champion, Amarone della Valpolicella, and Champagne, followed by the Italian bubbles of Trentodoc and Franciacorta. In Montalcino, according to the sentiment of the Enoteca La Fortezza, the red wine of the house, Brunello di Montalcino, dominates, ahead of Champagne and Franciacorta, while in Castelfranco Veneto (Treviso), the Ferrowine wine shop sees Prosecco Docg excel, ahead of Amarone della Valpolicella and Franciacorta. In Milan, Italy’s most international city, Enoclub sees Champagne in the lead, ahead of Prosecco and Italian Metodo Classico, while among reds, Barolo and Bolgheri come out on top. In Florence, Enoteca Vignoli crowns Bolgheri as the king of Christmas sales, ahead of Champagne and Italian bubbles in general. In Rome, the historic Trimani wine shop tells of a podium made up of Brunello di Montalcino, Franciacorta and Cesanese, the most important of Lazio’s reds, while the Continisio wine shop in Naples reports strong performances for Fiano di Avellino, for the reds of Campania (such as Taurasi and Aglianico, ed.), but also Bolgheri, and among bubbles, there is a two-way battle between Trentodoc and Champagne. Great classics and terroir are among the most popular at Vinarius De Pasquale in Bari, with, in order, Amarone della Valpolicella, Barolo and Primitivo di Manduria, while in Sardinia, according to the Antica Enoteca Cagliaritana, local wines are very popular, from Isola dei Nuraghi IGT (with a special mention for Turriga by Argiolas), Vermentino di Gallura and Carignano del Sulcis, while among the national denominations the most bought and given away, once again, is Amarone della Valpolicella. In general, wine shop owners point out, there has been an important recovery, especially on the part of private customers, while corporate gift giving is still subdued on pre-pandemic 2019.
These trends were also confirmed to WineNews by Andrea Terraneo, at the helm of Enoteca La Barrique in Cantù and President of Vinarius, the association that brings together more than 100 wine shops in Italy, describing an all in all positive picture: “things are going well, we can’t complain, the good expectations we had for the end of the year are being fulfilled, even if we will have the data to make definitive assessments at the end of January 2022. For the time being”, continues Terraneo, “the uncertainty of these days is not being felt too much, even though there have been some supply problems due to delays in deliveries in recent weeks. However, the most worrying aspect is the increase in raw materials, which will have an impact on production costs in 2022, but we will see what happens. In general, however, take-away bottle sales are doing much better than in 2020, with the average price per bottle at the moment mainly in the €15-30 range.
The situation is more varied as far as wine on tap is concerned, and depends very much on the area and type of venue, but here too things will depend on how the winter tourist season goes”. Among the types, Terraneo again points out, “the great classics are holding up well, but there is also a growing demand for wines from lesser-known appellations, with the desire to surprise and intrigue when giving a gift”. And in this sense, Italian wine is an inexhaustible reservoir of variety and quality, from every area of Italy.

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