Each wine in the province of Pisa belongs to a specific area and is associated with a road that winds between rolling hills in a charming landscape. If Tuscany is a land of great wines, the province of Pisa is no exception. Its wine production has been appreciated ever since the Etruscan period. Each wine in the province of Pisa belongs to a specific area and is associated with a road that winds between rolling hills in a charming landscape. If Tuscany is a land of great wines, the province of Pisa is no exception. Its wine production has been appreciated ever since the Etruscan period. Dozens of family-run wine farms have changed into businesses which promote their DOC (registered designation of origin) and DOCG (registered and guaranteed designation of origin) wines in Italy and abroad. The names of the main wines are:
Chianti delle Colline Pisane, Bianco Pisano di San Torpé, Vino Montescudaio, Vino dei Colli dell’Etruria Centrale.
The Chianti delle Colline Pisane (DOCG) is produced in a vast area extending from the Pisan Hills to the San Miniato area. This wine is obtained from grapes of the Sangiovese, Canaiolo Nero, Trebbiano Toscano and Malvasia del Chianti varieties grown on hilly terrains at altitudes below 500 meters. Its average alcoholic strength is 11 percent, but can attain 13 percent for particular soils and vintages. It is bright red in color and is characterized by a strong smell and dry taste. It is especially suited for meats and roasts.
The area devoted to the production of the Bianco Pisano di San Torpé (DOC) embraces an even larger territory, with a variety of terrains which do not allow uniform quality of the grapes and wine. The name is not derived from one of the many villages scattered on the hills but from the first Pisan martyr, who was beheaded in the 1st century AD. This wine is chiefly produced from Trebbiano grapes with the addition of Malvasia Toscana and Canaiolo Bianco. It has an alcoholic strength of about 11 percent. It is pale yellow in color and has a delicate smell and dry taste. It is ideal with fish and hors d’œuvres.
The Vino Montescudaio (DOC) is produced in the hilly area at the back of the Tyrrhenian coast which includes the communes of Montescudaio, Guardistallo, Casale Marittimo and Riparbella. The Montescudaio Rosso (red) is chiefly obtained from grapes of the Sangiovese, Canaiolo Nero, Trebbiano Toscano and Malvasia del Chianti varieties. This wine is bright red in color and has a strong smell and dry taste. It is particularly suited for first courses, white and red meats and cheeses.
Montescudaio Bianco (white) is made from Trebbiano Toscano, Canaiolo Bianco, Vermentino and Malvasia grapes. It generally accompanies delicate hors d’œuvres and first courses, fish and shellfish. The minimum alcoholic strength of both wines is 11.5 percent.
There is also a Montescudaio Vin Santo, a dessert wine produced from the same grape varieties as the Bianco and aged three years in wooden containers, the so-called “caratelli”, placed in special rooms termed “vinsantaie”. The wine has an alcoholic strength of 17 percent, is amber-colored and is characterized by a strong aroma, a mellow flavor and a slightly bitter aftertaste. It is best consumed with pastries.
The area of the Vino dei Colli dell’Etruria Centrale (DOC) coincides with that of the Chianti delle Colline Pisane, but producers have to choose between the two names. It comes in the red, white, rosé and vinsanto varieties. The red and rosé types (alcoholic strength 10 percent) are obtained from grapes of the Sangiovese, Canaiolo Nero, Trebbiano Toscano and Malvasia del Chianti varieties. The white and vinsanto types are produced from Trebbiano Toscano, Malvasia del Chianti, Pinot Bianco and Pinot Grigio grapes. The red type is suited for white and red meats and the rosé for canapés and cold cuts. The Vin Santo (alcoholic strength 16 percent) is ideal with desserts such as “cantuccini” and pastries.
Where to stay in Pisa
There are numerous high quality hotels, villas, apartments and agriturismi (Farm stays) available in Pisa, check them out and make a reservation here.