Rosso Piceno DOC

Rosso Piceno DOC

43° 30' 00'' N


13° 30' 00'' E




about this subregion

Discover the Rosso Piceno DOC wine subregion of Italy

The Rosso Piceno DOC, located in the Marche wine region of Italy, is distinguished by its varied and picturesque environment. This DOC spans across the provinces of Ancona, Macerata, Fermo, and Ascoli Piceno, featuring predominantly hilly terrain that rises up to 700 meters above sea level.

The area benefits from a Mediterranean climate characterized by hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters, with an average annual rainfall of around 800 millimeters, primarily during the winter months. This climate is ideal for viticulture, providing the necessary conditions for grape growth and maturation.

The soils in Rosso Piceno DOC are diverse, with clay and limestone being the most common. These soils offer excellent drainage and moisture retention, essential for the cultivation of Montepulciano and Sangiovese, the primary grape varieties in this DOC. The combination of clay's water retention and limestone's drainage properties creates a balanced environment for the vines, contributing to the quality and complexity of the wines.

This unique combination of climate, soil, and geographical positioning makes the Rosso Piceno DOC a notable and diverse wine-producing area in the Marche region.


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Vineyard Hectares





Discover Terroir

The landscape of the Rosso Piceno DOC  is characterized by its picturesque hilly terrain and diverse topography. The vineyards are primarily located on the upper hills, at altitudes ranging from 200 to 700 meters above sea level. This elevation provides an ideal environment for viticulture, with excellent drainage and exposure to sunlight, which is crucial for the growth of high-quality grapes.

The region is dominated by the scenic peaks of the Sibillini Mountains, which create a dramatic backdrop for the vineyards. The hills are interspersed with valleys and rolling fields, offering a variety of microclimates that contribute to the complexity and diversity of the wines produced. The landscape is also dotted with small villages and historic towns, adding to the region's charm and cultural richness.

The vineyards benefit from the natural beauty and the advantageous geographical features of the area. The proximity to the Adriatic Sea also influences the microclimates within the DOC, providing a moderating effect on temperatures and contributing to the overall health of the vines.

The climate of the Rosso Piceno DOC is Mediterranean, characterized by hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters. This climate is ideal for viticulture, particularly for the Montepulciano and Sangiovese grape varieties that dominate the region.

The proximity to the Adriatic Sea moderates temperatures, providing a cooling effect that is crucial during the hot summer months. This helps in maintaining the acidity and balance of the grapes. The vineyards, often located on hilly terrains, benefit from good sun exposure and the breezes from the sea, which help reduce the risk of fungal diseases.

The region experiences an average annual rainfall of around 800 millimeters, with most precipitation occurring in the winter months. This rainfall pattern ensures that the vines have sufficient water reserves to draw from during the dry growing season, promoting healthy vine growth and grape development​​​​​​​​​​.

The soils of the Rosso Piceno DOC in the Marche region are diverse, contributing significantly to the unique terroir of the area. The most common soils in this DOC include:

Clay Soils: Predominantly found throughout the region, clay soils are crucial for the growth of Montepulciano and Sangiovese grapes. These soils retain moisture well, which is beneficial during the dry summer months, ensuring that the vines receive a consistent water supply. Clay soils are known for their fertility and ability to produce robust, full-bodied wines.

Limestone Soils: Often intermixed with clay, limestone soils are prevalent in the higher elevations of the Rosso Piceno DOC. These soils provide excellent drainage, preventing waterlogging and promoting deep root growth. The presence of limestone contributes to the minerality and structure of the wines, enhancing their complexity.

Lime-Clay Soils: A combination of lime and clay soils is commonly found in vineyards with southeast exposure, particularly around 250 meters above sea level. This soil type balances the water retention properties of clay with the drainage benefits of limestone, creating an optimal environment for viticulture.

Silica-Rich Soils: In some areas, soils are rich in silica and sand, which offer good drainage and lower fertility. These conditions can reduce vine vigor, leading to lower yields but higher quality grapes with concentrated flavors.


Most common grapes of the Rosso Piceno DOC

The Rosso Piceno DOC is renowned for its robust and well-structured red wines, predominantly crafted from Montepulciano and Sangiovese grapes. These two varieties contribute to the distinctive characteristics of Rosso Piceno wines.

Montepulciano: Montepulciano is a vigorous grape variety that thrives in the fertile and well-drained soils of the Marche region. It requires a temperate climate with ample sunshine and a long growing season to reach optimal ripeness. The grape is well-suited to the hilly terrains and clay-limestone soils found in Rosso Piceno DOC, where the elevation and soil composition provide excellent drainage and prevent waterlogging. 

Montepulciano vines are typically trained using the cordon spur or Guyot systems to control their growth and ensure adequate air circulation, which helps reduce the risk of fungal diseases. This variety benefits from careful vineyard management, including pruning and thinning, to maintain balanced yields and enhance grape quality.

Sangiovese: Sangiovese, the other primary grape of Rosso Piceno DOC, is adaptable but performs best in warm, dry climates with well-drained, stony soils. It prefers the slightly higher altitudes and diverse terroirs of the Marche region, which provide the necessary temperature fluctuations between day and night to enhance its development. Sangiovese requires careful management of water supply, as it is sensitive to both drought and excessive moisture. 

The grape is usually cultivated using the vertical shoot positioning (VSP) trellis system, which supports the vine’s growth and allows for optimal sun exposure and air circulation. Regular canopy management practices, such as leaf removal and shoot thinning, are essential to ensure proper ripening and reduce the incidence of pests and diseases.

Most common wines of the Rosso Piceno DOC

The Rosso Piceno DOC is celebrated for its high-quality wines. This appellation encompasses a wide range of styles, each with its own unique aromatic and flavor profile. The most common wines from the Rosso Piceno DOC are Rosso, Sangiovese, Novello, and Superiore. 

Rosso: Rosso Piceno is a blend predominantly featuring Montepulciano and Sangiovese grapes. This wine typically exhibits a deep ruby color with vibrant black and red fruit notes, such as cherries, plums, and blackberries. 

On the palate, Rosso Piceno is known for its balanced acidity and soft tannins, delivering flavors that echo its fruity aromas, often accompanied by subtle hints of herbs and spices. This wine is approachable and versatile, making it a favorite for everyday enjoyment.

Sangiovese: Rosso Piceno Sangiovese highlights the characteristics of the Sangiovese grape. This wine presents a bright red hue and a bouquet rich with aromas of fresh red fruit notes, such as cherries, raspberries, and a touch of violets. 

The flavor profile is marked by lively acidity and moderate tannins, featuring notes of red berries, hints of tomato leaf, and a slight earthiness. The wine's crisp and refreshing nature makes it an excellent pairing for a variety of dishes.

Novello: Rosso Piceno Novello is a young, early-release wine made primarily from Montepulciano and Sangiovese. It is crafted using carbonic maceration, which enhances its fruity and floral aromas. Novello wines are light and fragrant, with pronounced red fruit notes of strawberries coupled with red currants and wildflowers notes. 

On the palate, they are fresh and juicy, with minimal tannins and a lively, effervescent quality. This wine is intended for immediate consumption and is often enjoyed shortly after its release in November.

Superiore: Rosso Piceno Superiore is a more structured and age-worthy expression of the DOC, requiring a minimum of 12 months of aging. This wine features a higher percentage of Montepulciano, giving it a deeper color and more intense aromas. The nose is rich with dark fruits like blackberries and plums, complemented by notes of spices, leather, and tobacco.

On the palate, Rosso Piceno Superiore is full-bodied, with firm tannins and a complex flavor profile that includes dark fruit, hints of vanilla, and a lingering finish. This wine pairs well with hearty dishes and has the potential to age gracefully.