An Italian Wine Guide

Looking for an Italian wine guide? These are a selection of the best-selling guides available on-line that provide a comprehensive introduction to Italian wine and in so doing unravel the puzzle of the DOC, DOCG, Super Tuscan, "Tipico" etc classification system in Italy.

They tell you about Italian wine labels, each Italian wine name and which wines not to miss in each price range, vintage, region, or by producer, plus foods to pair with them and a whole lot more.

I have included my wine merchant friends personal favourite guide and for those who love the series, there is Italian wine for Dummies!

Each author has a different style and approach, some more informal than others. Unsure which one would be the best for you? I always find the customer reviews helpful in deciding. The links will take you to the bookstore page for each book: scroll down to read the feedback left by those who have already purchased it.


The Italian Wine Guides


For those of you who like to have the very latest information, this is the just released 2011 edition of Gambero Rosso Italian Wines. It is the book that all Italian winemakers want their wines to feature in.



Making Sense Of Italian Wine is by Matt Kramer - the Wine Spectator columnist and author of the classic Making Sense series of wine book - and in hardback.

It is organised as a shopping guide, telling you which wines in your local shop can't be missed and which are safe to skip.

It also provides information about each wine region, traditions associated with winemaking and foods to match with your purchases.


The Italian Wine Guide: The Definitive Guide to Touring, Sourcing, and Tasting (Dolce Vita) by the Touring Club of Italy is a practical handbook on wineries, tours, and places offering tastings throughout Italy.

It contains:

  • 60 detailed maps and itineraries
  • suggestions on where to try the best wines and eat local cuisine
  • listing of over 1,900 retailers - with the new edition including US retailers

Vino Italiano: The Regional Wines of Italy written by David Lynch is an American guide to the wines of Italy.

It provides information for restaurateurs, wine merchants, and wine enthusiasts on Italy’s 300 growing zones, 361 authorized grape varieties, and 200 of the top producers.

For each region it identifies key wine styles, producers, and vintages.

Plus regional recipes.


Wines of Italy: Il Gusto Italiano del Vino is written by Patricia Guy who lives in Italy.

It a comprehensive collection of current information about contemporary Italian grape varieties (350 have been classified and more than 1000 are being catalogued and studied yoday), and contains:

  • 100 colour photographs
  • complimentary food pairings, and
  • recipes for meals to try with each wine, plus
  • locations and maps for planning a tour of Italian vineyards.

The Italian Wine Guide: Where to Go and What to See, Drink, and Eat (Heritage Guides) by the Touring Club of Italy is the predecessor to their The Definitive Guide to Touring, Sourcing, and Tasting (Dolce Vita) above but is still popular with those searching for planning to visit Italy's vineyards (nearly 50% purchase this book compared to 13% for the new one).

It contains:

  • information on 305 DOC and DOCG appellation wines
  • notes on 744 wineries that offer guided tours and tastings
  • descriptions of 324 evocative winery towns where you can enjoy fine wines with local cuisine
  • 99 detailed itineraries with maps
  • 167 maps covering 20 regions and 48 vineyard areas

The hardback version of The New Italy: A Complete Guide to Contemporary Italian Wine by Daniele Cernilli and Marco Sabellico was described by Tim Atkin, The Observer Magazine, December,17 2000 as "The best book on Italy in the English language. My book of the year."

It is a beautifully photographed reference on Italian wines.

It contains:

  • all the siginificant developments in Italian wine
  • a comprehensive description of all of Italy's wine types from Barolo, Chianti, and Montepulciano to Sangiovese and the champagne-like sparkling Prosecco with detailed information on appellations, grape varieties, geography and climate
  • profiles of producers
  • the wine styles and winemaking methods
  • a region by region tour of vineyards, and
  • full colour maps

In the The Finest Wines of Tuscany and Central Italy: A Regional and Village Guide to the Best Wines and Their Producers (The World's Finest Wines) specialist wine trader and writer Nicholas Belfrage MW shares his insider knowledge of:

  • the geology, geography and grape varieties
  • the latest research into the Sangiovese variety
  • the regulatory framework and recent controversial developments in viticulture and winemaking
  • the rise of the Super Tuscan wines

And is accompanied by:

  • in-depth, illustrated profiles of more than 90 of the most interesting producers, large and small, with notes on their finest wines
  • and a comprehensive review of vintages with a listing of his top 100 favourite wines

And for those who like the Dummies Series, there is also Italian Wine for Dummies written by experts Mary Ewing-Mulligan and Ed McCarthy.

It is a friendly and un-intimidating guide to understanding the complexities of Italian wine. Easy to read, concise and clear but still providing sufficient information for any professional to have within their book repertoire.

And the Pocket Edition is perfect for taking with you on your trip around Italy.


An Italian wine guide for wine lovers with a Kindle

And for those of you with a Kindle, these is also...

Ecco Italian wine guidethe simple, user-friendly guide The Ecco Guide to the Best Wines of Italy by wine expert and director of the International Wine Academy of Roma Ian D'Agata. Packed with information on where to purchase Italian wines in America, it also offers tips for visiting wineries and a "best of" list from the 100 best red wines under $100, to the 60 best white wines under $100... to the 10 best debut wines.



Italian wine guides: "The wine buyers bible"



And then, as recommended by my friend who is a wine merchant, there is the guide that is regarded as the industry bible for wine buyers whether they be businesses or you and me.

The seventh edition of Parker's Wine Buyer's Guide covers not just Italian wines, but wine from western Europe, central Europe, Isreal, North America, South America, Argentina, Australia, and New Zealand.






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