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PRODUCTION REGULATIONS FOR “VERNACCIA DI SAN GIMIGNANO” DOCG wines
Article 1 – (Designation)
1.1 The designation of controlled and guaranteed origin “Vernaccia di San Gimignano” is reserved
for the white wine, also produced in a “Riserva” version, that meets the conditions and
requirements set out in these production regulations.
Article 2 – (Permitted grape varieties)
2.1 “Vernaccia di San Gimignano” wine must be made from grapes grown in vineyards composed
of the Vernaccia di San Gimignano grape variety.
2.2 Other non-aromatic white grape varieties approved for cultivation by the Region of Tuscany
may be included up to a maximum of 15%. Use of the following varieties is not permitted:
Traminer, Moscato bianco, Muller Thurgau, Malvasia di Candia, Malvasia Istriana and Incrocio
Sauvignon and Riesling grapes may, however, be included to a maximum amount of 10%, whether
individually or combined.
2.3 Annex No 1 lists the complementary vine varieties that may be used in the production of
of the above-mentioned wine, listed in the National Register of Vine Varieties for Wine Grapes approved
with Ministerial Decree of 7 May 2004 (published in the Official Gazette no. 242 of 14 October 2004), and subsequent
Article 3 – (Grape production area)
3.1 The grapes for the production of “Vernaccia di San Gimignano” wine must be obtained from
vineyards located in the hillside terrain of the municipality of San Gimignano, in the province of
Article 4 – (Viticulture)
4.1 The environmental and cultivation conditions of the vineyards intended for the production of “Vernaccia di San Gimignano” DOCG wine must be those traditionally observed in the area and in any case allow the production of grapes, and resulting wines, with the required quality characteristics.
4.2 Therefore only hillside terrains with good exposure, not higher than 500 m above sea level, and with Pliocene soil composed of yellow sand and sandy clay and/or of mixed consistency, shall be considered as eligible.
4.3 Every forced cultivation practice is prohibited. Emergency irrigation is permitted.
4.4 The planting arrangements and the training and pruning systems used must be those that help preserve the specific characteristics of the grapes and the wine. The “tendone” training system is prohibited.
4.5 The actual number of vines per hectare of productive land should not be less than four thousand for new plantations or replanted vineyards.
4.6 New plantations are considered to have reached full production starting from the fourth year of growth. However, production of 60% of the expected maximum is permitted in the third year of growth.
4.7 The maximum permitted grape/per hectare yield in specialised vineyards is 9 tons. In any event, the maximum grape yield should not exceed an average of 3.0 kg per vine. For existing plantations created between 9 July 1993 and the entry into force of these regulations, maximum grape yields should not exceed an average of 4.0 kg per vine. For existing plantations created before 9 July 1993, maximum grape yields should not exceed an average of 5.0 kg per vine.
4.8 Even in particularly good vintages, production should be brought within the above limits through careful selection of the grapes so that the total does not exceed the limit by 20%, in which case, the entire production will be downgraded.
4.9 Having consulted the relevant winegrowers’ associations, the Region of Tuscany may, on an annual basis, issue a decree before the harvest establishing a production limit lower than that laid down in these regulations, with immediate notification to the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry and the National Committee for the protection of the designation of origin of wines.
4.10 The grapes intended for vinification must ensure the “Vernaccia di San Gimignano” wine a minimum natural alcohol content by volume of 10.5%, and the “riserva” type a minimum natural alcohol content by volume of 12.0%.
4.11 The grapes intended for the vinification of the “riserva” type must be specifically declared in the annual harvest report and their intended use must be indicated in the wine producer’s official documents.
Article 5 – (Vinification)
5.1 The winemaking process must be carried out within the area of the San Gimignano municipality.
5.2 Vinification outside of the production area is, however, permitted to wine producers that have obtained special authorisation from the relevant Ministry, under the conditions laid down in the production regulations approved by the Ministerial Decree of 09/07/1993.
5.3 The maximum yield of wine from the grapes should not exceed 70%. If the yield exceeds this limit by up to a maximum of 5%, the excess is not entitled to the designation of controlled and guaranteed origin. If the total yield exceeds 75%, the entire product shall not be entitled to the designation of controlled and guaranteed origin.
5.4 Enrichment is permitted under the conditions laid down by EC and national rules, and with regard to the use of concentrated grape must, only rectified concentrated must is permitted.
5.5 Wooden containers may be used in the vinification and subsequent ageing stages.
5.6 The “Riserva” version of “Vernaccia di San Gimignano” wine with denomination of controlled and guaranteed origin shall undergo an ageing period of at least 11 months from the 1st of January of the year following that of the grape harvest. Before the wine is released for consumption, it must be left to mature in bottles for three months.
5.7 The maturing and ageing processes must be carried out within the grape production area or in authorised facilities where vinification is permitted, as specified in paragraph 2 of this article.
5.8 Bottling is only permitted in the area where the grapes are fermented, as described in paragraphs 1 and 2 of this article.
5.9 In accordance with Article 8 of EC Reg. No. 607/2009, bottling or must take place in the defined geographical area to safeguard the quality and guarantee the origin quality and guarantee the origin.
5.10 In accordance with Article 8 of EC Reg. No. 607/2009, to safeguard the pre-established rights traditionally bottled outside the delimited production area, individual authorisations are delimited production area, individual authorisations are provided for under the conditions of Article 10 paragraphs 3 and 4 of Legislative Decree No. 61 of 8 April 2010, published in the Official Gazette No. 96 of 26 April 2010.
Article 6 – (Marketing characteristics of the wine)
6.1 When “Vernaccia di San Gimignano” wine is released on the market, it must have the following
Colour: straw yellow with golden highlights that become more pronounced with age. Bouquet: delicate and subtle, with initial fruity notes; mineral notes can develop with refinement and ageing;
Taste: dry, harmonious, tangy, at times featuring a characteristic almond aftertaste. Minimum total alcoholic strength by volume: 11.5%; 12.5% for the reserve.
Maximum residual sugar: 4 g/l.
Minimum total acidity: 4.5 g/l.
Minimum non-reducing extract: 16 g/l.
6.2 The Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies has the power to amend by decree the
minimum limits for total acidity and non-reducing extract stated above.
Article 7 – (Labelling)
7.1 In the designation and marketing of “Vernaccia di San Gimignano” D.O.C.G. wine, the specification of the “Riserva” type must appear below the words “denominazione di origine controllata e garantita” and be written in a font size that is the same or smaller than that used for the “Vernaccia di San Gimignano” designation of origin, equally visible and displayed against the same coloured background.
7.2 The addition of qualifications other than those listed in these regulations, including such adjectives as “extra”, “fine”, “scelto” [choice], “selezionato” [selected], “superiore” [superior], “vecchio” [old], etc., is prohibited. However, reference to proper names, company names or private brand names – provided they are without laudatory meaning and not likely to deceive the consumer – is permitted.
7.3 Use of the term “vigna” [vineyard] is permitted provided that it is followed by the corresponding place name, that its surface area is distinctly specified in the register of vineyards, that the vinification and storage of the wine occur in separate containers, and that the term is mentioned in conjunction with the place name in both the grape harvest report and production declaration, and the registers and accompanying documents.
7.4 The designation of “Vernaccia di San Gimignano” D.O.C.G. wine must include an indication of the year of vintage.
Article 8 – (Containers)
8.1 The bottles in which “Vernaccia di San Gimignano” wine is packaged for sale must be made of glass, in the Bordeaux shape, and in the following capacities: 0.187, 0.375, 0.500, 0.750, 1.500 and 3.000 litres.
8.2 The corking systems permitted are those specified by the relevant laws.