Rosso Piceno and Rosso Piceno Superiore are blends of Montepulciano and Sangiovese.
Wines with “Rosso Piceno” or “Piceno” DOC title can indeed be produced only with the grapes of these two grapevines grown of age in the Marche region
According to the disciplinary production standards published on the official website of the Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies (latest modification: DM dated November 30th 2011), the percentages of the two main grape varieties are the following:
- Montepulciano: from 35 to 85%;
- Sangiovese: from 15 to 50%.
All the other non-aromatic grape varieties, with red fruit, suitable for cultivation in the Marche Region, can be used in up to 15%, on their own or jointly.
The vineyards considered to be suitable must have an appropriate exposure, must not be grown on excessively moist land and must not be located at the bottom of the valley.
PRODUCTION ZONE OF ROSSO PICENO DOC
The grapes used to produce Rosso Piceno Doc must be cultivated in an extensive area of the Marche region, which includes the provinces of Macerata, Fermo, Ascoli Piceno and Ancona. The northern boundary of the whole area is the river Metauro, the southern boundary is the river Tronto, while the western boundary is the beginning of the Apennine range.
The vineyards must have at least 2.200 vines per hectare and must not be trained high overhead along a pergola. The traditional training systems with espalier, spurred cordon and Guyot are admitted.
The maximum production of grapes per hectare of must not be more than 13 tons.
The grapes used to make wine must ensure it has a minimum natural alcohol content by volume of 11%.
Download the D.O.C. Regulation
WHAT IS ROSSO PICENO SUPERIORE DOC
The production zone of Rosso Piceno Superiore Doc is much smaller and comprises just the land of the 13 most southern towns of the Marche region. The ministry disciplinary standards state that this area is ““perfect for grapevine cultivation”.
The maximum production of grapes per hectare must not be more than 12 tons
The grapes used to make the wine must ensure it has a minimum natural alcohol content by volume of 11.5%.
The Rosso Piceno Superiore wines must be aged for at least one year: they cannot be put on the marketplace before November 1st of the year after the grapes are produced.
THE FIRST “ROSSO PICENO SUPERIORE”
The first bottle of Rosso Piceno Superiore to be sold on the marketplace was bottled by Tenuta Cocci Grifoni
in San Savino di Ripatransone (Ap) in 1970, from grapes harvested in 1969.
The estate is still among the most esteemed wine producers of the Piceno wine-making region. It is situated on the hills at approximately 250 above sea level, very close to the coastline.
It was the beginning of a new awareness of the producers of this area, no longer focusing on quantity but on quality instead.
THE PERFECT AREA FOR MONTEPULCIANO AND SANGIOVESE
These two age-old Italian grape varieties grow ideally in the zone of Rosso Piceno and Rosso Piceno Superiore. This area does indeed favour the production of unique and peculiar wines.
The factors enhanced by the DOC mark are, in particular, the hills, the fact that the vineyards are exposed mainly to the south/south-east, the climate with cold winters, warm summers and average rainfall of 750 mm, the mainly clayish soil, capable of draining quickly any excess water, thanks to both the slopes and the permeability of the ground itself.