37° 35' 59.9784" N


14° 0' 55.2816" E




about this region

Sicily has emerged as a prominent player in the global wine industry. With its diverse landscape, favourable climate and rich viticultural heritage, Sicily wine regions offer a wine experience that is both captivating and distinct.

Sicily is the southernmost region of Italy and the largest island in the Mediterranean. Much of the southern part of the island lies further south than Tunis in Africa. For more than 2,500 years, Sicily has been an important center of Mediterranean winemaking. It has the most vineyard area of any Italian region (293,000 acres).

The island's Mediterranean climate, characterized by warm summers and mild winters, provides an ideal environment for grape cultivation, fostering the development of ripe, flavorful fruits. Sicily's unique terroir, shaped by volcanic soils, limestone, and coastal influences, imparts a distinctive character to its wines, ranging from vibrant and fruit-forward whites to bold and structured reds. Moreover, Sicilian winemakers embrace both traditional and modern winemaking techniques, showcasing their commitment to quality and innovation. With a rapidly growing reputation for excellence, Sicily is a captivating wine destination that promises both connoisseurs and casual enthusiasts an unforgettable journey through its vineyards and diverse wine offerings.

The region boasts a vast array of grape varietals, from indigenous treasures like Nero d'Avola and Grillo to international favourites like Chardonnay and Syrah. Although long ago, the island was famous for sweet Muscat and, later, for fortified Marsala. Nowadays, more dry table wines are produced in different wine regions of Sicily, such as the IGT Terre Siciliane or DOC Sicily. If you want to learn more about the specific location of the different wine regions of Sicily, you can check our Sicily wine map.



Vineyard Hectares



2000 - 3000

growing degree days

Discover Terroir

Sicily, the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, is an autonomous region of Italy and is known for its wine production. The Sicilian wine region is situated on the island itself, which is located in the central Mediterranean, south of the Italian mainland. The coordinates of Sicily are approximately 37.5994° N latitude and 14.0154° E longitude.

The southernmost point of Sicily is Capo Passero (Cape Passero), which is located at approximately 36.65 degrees North latitude. On the other hand, the northernmost point of Tunisia is Cape Angela, which is situated at about 37.24 degrees North latitude. Therefore, Capo Passero in Sicily is about 0.59 degrees further south than Cape Angela in Tunisia.

Despite Sicily being part of Italy and Tunisia being a separate country in North Africa, the proximity of the two regions has had historical, cultural, and economic implications. The Strait of Sicily, which separates Sicily from Tunisia, is relatively narrow at its narrowest point (around 145 km or 90 miles) and has facilitated interactions between the two regions throughout history. The positioning of Sicily and Tunisia has also played a significant role in migration patterns and trade routes in the Mediterranean. It has influenced the movement of people, goods, and ideas between Europe and Africa for centuries.

Unofficially, the Sicilian wine region is divided into three sub-regions: Val di Noto, Val di Demono, and Val di Mazara. Despite it is not a widely recognized or official classification, you are guaranteed to see this on a restaurant menu in Sicily and this is how most Sicilians talk about their wines. This unoffficial classification is helpful to understand the diversity of Sicilian wines better, taking into account the geographical and historical contexts of wine production on the island.

  1. Val di Noto: This sub-region is located in the southeastern part of Sicily, and it includes areas such as Ragusa, Siracusa, and Noto. The Val di Noto is known for its historical significance, as it was heavily affected by a devastating earthquake in 1693, which led to the rebuilding of several towns in the area in a Baroque architectural style. The vineyards in this sub-region benefit from a Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers and mild winters. The area is renowned for producing Nero d'Avola and Frappato grapes, often used in the production of Cerasuolo di Vittoria, Sicily's only DOCG wine.
  2. Val di Demono: This sub-region is located in the northwestern part of Sicily and encompasses areas such as Palermo, Trapani, and Caltanissetta. The Val di Demono has a more diverse topography and climate compared to other parts of Sicily, with both coastal and hilly inland areas. Vineyards in this sub-region grow a variety of grapes, including Nero d'Avola, Perricone, Catarratto, and Grillo, among others. The wines produced here are known for their richness and versatility.
  3. Val di Mazara: This sub-region is situated in the southwestern part of Sicily and includes areas such as Marsala and Trapani. Val di Mazara is known for its strong historical ties to wine production, particularly Marsala wine, a fortified wine famous worldwide. The area's warm, coastal climate and unique marine influence contribute to the production of Marsala and other wines using indigenous grape varieties like Grillo and Zibibbo (Muscat of Alexandria).

This wine region works closely with consorzios such as the Consorzio di Tutela Vini Sicily to improve the quality of the wines produced in the region.

As always, if you want to earn more about the different official wine regions of Sicily, then our Sicily wine map will be of great help.

Situated in the central Mediterranean, this Italian island enjoys a typical Mediterranean climate characterized by warm and dry summers, moderate rainfall, and mild winters. These climatic conditions play a significant role in shaping the region's viticulture.

The warm and dry climate of Sicily, combined with moderate rainfall, provides an ideal environment for grape cultivation. The low humidity helps protect the grapes from diseases like mildew, ensuring healthier vineyards and better grape quality. Furthermore, Sicily benefits from winds, allowing the coastal breezes to permeate the vineyards. This cooling effect not only helps to moderate the temperatures but also aids in preventing rot and maintaining the overall health of the grapes. The combination of warm, sunny days and cool nights in many parts of the island creates favorable conditions for growing a wide variety of grape types.

Sicily's unique geography, with its diverse microclimates, volcanic soils, and proximity to the sea, makes it an excellent location for grape cultivation. This climatic and soils diversity allows the different Sicily wine regions to produce unique wines.

Sicily possesses a variety of soils that contribute to the diverse terroir of the Sicily wine regions. Sicily's viticultural areas are vast and varied, and different regions within Sicily can have their own specific soil compositions, influenced by factors such as volcanic activity, elevation, and proximity to the coast. These diverse soil types contribute to the unique characteristics and expressions of the wines produced in different parts of Sicily. Some of the predominant soils found in Sicilian viticulture include:

  • Volcanic Soils: Sicily is home to Mount Etna, one of the most active volcanoes in the world. The volcanic activity in the region has given rise to fertile volcanic soils rich in minerals, such as potassium, magnesium, and iron, which impart unique flavors and aromas to the grapes. These volcanic soils, including lava-based soils such as sandy volcanic ash (known as "lapilli") and black volcanic rock (known as "scoria"), are found primarily on the slopes of Mount Etna. These soils also have excellent drainage properties, allowing the vines to develop deep root systems and access water and nutrients from deeper layers. The combination of volcanic minerals, good drainage, and the influence of the volcano's energy creates an exceptional terroir that produces wines with complexity, minerality, and a sense of place.
  • Calcareous Soils: Calcareous soils, also known as limestone soils or chalk, are prevalent in various parts of Sicily. These soils are rich in calcium carbonate and provide good water retention while maintaining a cool temperature, allowing the vines to access water during the drier months. At the same time, these soils do not retain excessive heat, helping to keep the vineyards cool. Calcareous soils are particularly beneficial for white grape varieties as they contribute to the production of lighter, elegant, and fresher white wines.
  • Clay Soils: Clay soils can be found in different Sicily wine regions, often mixed with other soil types. Clay soils have excellent water retention capacity, ensuring the availability of water to the vines during drier periods. They also contribute to the overall structure and body of the wines.
  • Sandy Soils: Sandy soils, known for their good drainage properties, are found in coastal Sicily wine regions. These soils are characterized by their high sand content, which allows for efficient water drainage. Sandy soils contribute to the production of wines with lighter body and more pronounced fruit characteristics.
  • Alluvial Soils: Alluvial soils, resulting from the deposition of sediment by rivers and streams, can be found in some valleys and plains of the Sicily wine regions. These soils are typically fertile and well-draining, supporting the growth of healthy vineyards.


In Sicily, several grape varieties are widely cultivated, contributing to the region's diverse wine production. The most planted grape varieties in Sicily, categorized by color, are as follows:

Red Grape Varieties:
  1. Nero d'Avola: This indigenous Sicilian grape variety is the most prominent red grape in the region. Known for its bold flavors, Nero d'Avola produces wines with rich fruitiness, medium to high tannins, and good acidity.
  2. Frappato: Another native Sicilian grape, Frappato, is often used in blends or as a standalone variety. It lends wines bright acidity, red fruit flavors, and an elegant, light-to-medium-bodied profile.
  3. Nerello Mascalese: Mostly grown on the volcanic slopes of Mount Etna, Nerello Mascalese produces elegant, aromatic wines with red fruit notes, mineral undertones, and lively acidity.
White Grape Varieties:
  1. Catarratto: As the most planted white grape variety in Sicily, Catarratto is versatile and used for both still and fortified wines. It offers fresh citrus flavors, good acidity, and a medium body.
  2. Grillo: Another indigenous Sicilian grape, Grillo, has gained popularity for its ability to produce aromatic and crisp white wines. It showcases tropical fruit notes, zesty acidity, and a medium body.
  3. Inzolia (also known as Ansonica): Inzolia is widely planted and used in the production of both still and fortified wines. It imparts floral aromas, citrus flavors, and moderate acidity.

These grape varieties represent the most commonly planted and influential cultivars in Sicily, contributing to the region's rich and diverse wine portfolio.

Sicily is known for producing a wide range of wines, showcasing the region's diverse terroir and grape varieties. However, the 2 flagship wines of the region are the red wine Nero d'Avola and the white wine Catarratto. Here are some of the  types of wines produced in the different Sicily wine regions:

  • Red Wines: Sicily is renowned for its robust and flavourful red wines. The dominant red grape variety, Nero d'Avola, is often used to create full-bodied and intense red wines with rich fruit flavors, balanced tannins, a very dense red color and good acidity. If these wines are consumed young, then they will have a fresher profile, with notes reminiscent of cherry, while aged wines have a flavor profile that may remind of black fruits or even chocolate. Nero d'Avola wines are ideal to accompany stews or grilled meats. Other red grape varieties like Frappato and Nerello Mascalese are also utilized to produce lighter, more elegant red wines.
  • White Wines: Sicily's white wines offer a refreshing and aromatic experience. Catarratto, the most widely planted white grape, contributes to crisp white wines, with a good body and floral and fruity notes that can be reminiscent of citrus, apricot or even jasmine. Some may even surprise you with tropical fruit or herbal notes! Grillo, another indigenous variety, is known for its aromatic profile and tropical fruit flavors. Inzolia, also known as Ansonica, is used to produce both still and fortified white wines with floral aromas and moderate acidity.
  • Rosé Wines: Sicily produces vibrant and fruity rosé wines. These wines are often made using a blend of red and white grape varieties, including Nero d'Avola and Frappato. Sicilian rosés exhibit a range of flavors from fresh red berries to citrus notes, with a crisp and lively character.
  • Sweet Wines: Sicily has a long-standing tradition of producing sweet wines. Moscato di Pantelleria, made from the Muscat of Alexandria grape, is a renowned sweet wine from the island. These wines offer intense floral aromas, ripe fruit flavors, and a luscious sweetness.
  • Fortified Wines: Sicily's fortified wine, Marsala, holds a significant place in the region's winemaking history. Marsala is produced using various grape varieties and is known for its rich flavors, nutty notes, and complex profiles.
  • Sparkling Wines: Sicily has also embraced the production of sparkling wines, both traditional method and Charmat method. These sparkling wines showcase Sicily's vibrant fruit flavors and effervescence.

20 - 400 m


500 - 600 mm


Volcanic and calcareous soils

top varietal

Nero d'Avola and Catarratto

History of wine

Sicily's history as a wine region is deeply rooted in ancient times, with viticulture believed to have been practiced as early as 8000 BC. The indigenous tribes of Sicans, Sicels, and Elimians, who inhabited the region from 12000 BC, likely played a significant role in the early cultivation of grapes.

The first notable advancements in Sicilian viticulture occurred between 1100 and 1000 BC when the Phoenicians introduced new winemaking techniques to Western Sicily. Subsequently, between 800 and 700 BC, the Greeks, known for their appreciation of wine and gastronomy, also contributed to the development of winemaking in Eastern Sicily.

During the period between 700 and 241 BC, Greek wines and culinary traditions gained popularity throughout the Greek Empire. However, Sicily came under Roman control from 241 BC to 440 AD, leading to a surge in the popularity of Sicilian wines within the Roman Empire.

From 535 to 1861 AD, Sicilian viticulture experienced significant fluctuations due to the various empires and ruling powers that dominated the region. These included the Norman Empire, Viking Empire, Byzantine Empire, and Bourbon dynasty. Each empire influenced the fate of Sicilian wines, shaping their production and consumption patterns.

In the 2000s, a significant turning point occurred for Sicilian viticulture with the emergence of quality wines from regions such as Etna. Wines produced from indigenous grapes like Nerello Mascalese and Carricante garnered attention and acclaim, revitalizing Sicily's wine industry.

The pivotal moment that solidified Sicily's commitment to producing quality wines came in 2011 with the creation of the DOC Sicily designation. This designation provided a framework and recognition for Sicilian wines, encouraging winemakers to focus on improving quality and showcasing the unique characteristics of the region's terroir.

Today, Sicily is recognized as a dynamic and diverse wine region, blending ancient winemaking traditions with modern techniques. With a rich history dating back millennia, Sicilian wines continue to captivate wine enthusiasts worldwide with their exceptional quality and distinct character.