Why is Conegliano Valdobbiadene placed in the top of world of Prosecco’s quality pyramid? The highest point of all is the represented by Superiore Di Cartizze, a small plot of land of 107 hectares in the commune of Valdobbiadene divided by hundreds of growers. They produce only a million bottles per year.
In the D.O.C.G. are he highest and most precipitous areas in the region which require a great amount of work effort, dedication and determination from farmers. These are considered the “heroic vineyards” where grapes are picked for Rive wines. The Rive (steep hillsides in the local dialect) are a collection of vineyards identified as source for the highest quality grapes which are picked by hand.
Conegliano Valdobbiadene is produced from at least 85% of grapes of the Glera variety (this name has substituted that of “Prosecco”); no more than 15% of the following local varieties may be added: Verdiso, Bianchetta, Perera and Glera Lunga. For sparkling wine, producers can choose to use up to 15% of Pinot and Chardonnay grapes. Wines are constantly audited by an independent certifying agency which guarantees origin and quality.
The Production Method of Prosecco Superiore
The production method used in Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G. is obtained almost exclusively by the Italian Method (with a second fermentation in pressurized vats called autoclaves), a technique that was further perfected by Professor Tullio de Rosa of the School of Winemaking in Conegliano. This method succeeds in highlighting the aromas that are naturally typical of the Glera grape; indeed, some producers like to refer to it as the “Conegliano Valdobbiadene Method”.