Travel Guide to Umbria Wine Region

The gentle landscape of Umbria is one of the most attractive regions of Italy: beautiful lakes are just as much part of it as high mountains, historic towns and of course many olive groves and vineyards. In Umbria, holidaymakers will find everything they need for a varied and restful stay!


Check out wine tastings & tours in Umbria wine region to discover ancient wine civilization!

Start planning your wine trip in the heart of Italy. We will tell you more about:

Umbrian wines

Where to taste them

Places to visit

And of course, what to eat in Umbria

Small town Abeto, Umbria, Italy

Umbria – Wines from the heart of Italy

Umbria wine region is located in central Italy surrounded by Tuscany, Lazio and Marche wine regions. Etruscans and Umbrians were the first to plant vines 3,000 years ago. Later, the region was known especially for the white wine Orvieto. The Orvieto still exists today – it is called Trebbiano, Verdello or Canaiolo Bianco – but today Umbria is best known for its characterful red and white wines. You can try Verdello at Palazzone, an artisanal Italian winery.

Terroir & Climate: The landscape of Umbria is characterized by hills and mountains. Therefore, a large number of different grape varieties thrive on the diverse soil types as well as a lot of experiences to discover this vast terroir. Special Mediterranean microclimates in the area of the Trasimeno Lake in the east and in the Tiber valley ensure an optimal ripening of the grapes. The daytime and nighttime differences in temperature, especially at higher altitudes, are ideal conditions for producing elegant, mineral white wines with the potential to mature.

Vineyards around Corbara Lake, Umbria wine region, Italy

What you should taste in Umbria wine region

Umbria has a total of 2 DOC, 13 DOC wines and 6 IGT classified areas and nearly 60 % of the 16 500 ha of vineyards are planted with red wines especially around Montefalco and Lake Trasimeno.

Lovers of harmonious red and white wines will find what they are looking for in the Colli Perugini (DOC), the hills around the capital Perugia. And as well at Todi (DOC) – south of Montefalco – the autochthonous white variety Grechetto thrives excellently there. Grechotto can produce mineral nutty wines. With more neutral variety Trebbiano is made the wines of Orvietto, for which the region of Umbria is very well known.


Typical for the white Orvieto is the spicy, delicate and bitter aroma on the finish. This wine is vinified in different sweet grades: secco, abboccato, amabile and dolce – mostly it is, however, dry.

Particularly noble red wines are produced from Sagrantino grape variety, the Sagrantino di Montefalco. The volcanic soil in the warmer areas produces this excellent spicy-rich and long-lived red wines. A dark, powerful, alcohol and full-bodied red wine. Very particular, the wine needs a bit of getting used to it, as it can reach enormously high tannin levels

Whether the success of the dry Sagrantino Passito is slightly behind: The sweet wine was once pressed in the farms around Montefalco from dried grapes and drunk for the first time at Easter – the lamb.

Tourists during visit to the Benedetti & Grigi and the presentation of clothes.

TIP!

You will be welcome at Cantina Benedetti & Grigi, a superb winery in Montefalco area using a typical variety named Sagrantino.

 

Grape varieties

Little is known that in Umbria basically more red than white wines are produced. This is not by chance, after all, the climate and soil conditions are similar to those in the eastern border region of Tuscany. First and foremost Sangiovese for the Montefalco Rosso as well as Barbera and Merlot.

Red varieties:
  • Sangiovese
  • Sagrantino
  • Colorinho
White varieties
  • Grechetto
  • Trebbiano
  • Verdello

Where to taste wines in Umbria

Visit our recommended wineries in Umbria wine region and enjoy great Sagrantino and Orvietto wines as well as other wine highlights of the region.

Have a look at some of them bellow and learn more about their wine experiences:

In the heart of Montefalco

Two bottles of lovely wine and pottery from Cantina Benincasa.

 

Benincasa winery is located in the most prestigious winemaking region of Montefalco, an area famous and suitable for producing Sagrantino di Montefalco DOCG wine.

At Benincasa, you will be able to taste wines made from local as well as international grape varieties that are cultivated with the respect of the environment.

 

War refuge cave converted into a cellar

Four winemakers from Cantina Goretti are tasting wine in the cellar.

 

Goretti winery is located outside the city of Perugia, admiring the magnificent views of sunrises and sunsets

The winery produces award-winning wines from indigenous grape varieties.

Visit Goretti winery and discover the 12th century tower and overlook the landscape while enjoying your glass of wine!

 

With a mesmerizing view

The lush vineyards and hilly surroundings of the Palazzone winery.

 

Palazzone winery produces one of the most prominent wines from Umbria wine region. It is located on the slopes of Rocca Ripesena hills, close to Orvieto.

Visit the Palazzone, listen theri history and taste wines paired with local specialities and of course admire the landscape sorrounds the winery.

 

 


 

Places to visit in Umbria

For the ones interested in culture – in addition to the larger and more well-known cities such as Perugia, Orvieto and Assisi – a visit to many other interesting places with medieval flair and art treasures is worth it.

Orvieto – Historic town surrounded by vineyards

Houses built of and on tufa, one of the most magnificent Gothic facades in Italy and culinary delights on every corner: Orvieto is one of the most interesting cities of Umbria, so you should take some time to get to know Orvieto and its inhabitants.

The Cathedral of Orvieto in the heart of the city is known beyond Italy’s borders. It dates back to the 13th century and has a facade decorated with filigree reliefs and colourful mosaics.


On the edge of the historic centre is another extraordinary sight: the Pozzo di San Patrizio. This 58.5 m deep fountain was built in the 16th century and has two spiral staircases running side by side. On those once loaded with water buckets, donkeys could run up and down at the same time. The city of Orvieto is surrounded by wine-growing areas. Here, on the slopes of the green hills of Umbria, the Trebbiano Toscano and Verdello grape varieties are cultivated on 2,500 hectares.

Orvieto town, Umbria wine region, Italy

Assisi – A divine place in the hills of Umbria

History has been written in the small central Italian city that can be visited today. In addition to the well-preserved medieval town centre, especially the Basilica of San Francesco is a visitor magnet. It is the tomb of St. Francis of Assisi and is one of the seven highest-ranking churches in Italy. As he is the founder of the Order of the Friars Minor, now called Franciscan Order.

Assisi and panorama of Umbria wine region, Italy

Nestled in dense green, the sandstone-colored buildings of the medieval town stand out from the surrounding landscape. Particularly impressive and recognizable from afar are the well-preserved city walls and the fortress ruin Rocca Maggiore. The latter has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000. The winding streets and ancient buildings of all eras beyond the city wall tell of this long history.

 

 

building at Tili Vini winery with umbrellas and eating zone

 

TIP!

You can find the Tili Vini Winery on the eastern border of this beautiful city, a family estate for generations. The winery that has centuries-old history of wine and olive oil production.

 

 

Spelllo – a sea of flowers

Once a year, the small Umbrian village of Spello, which lies southeast of Perugia, shines in a very special light. It’s not less magical on the other days of the year, but on the weekend after Corpus Christi, it seems almost magical. The reason for this is the famous flower festival “Infographic of Spello”.

Almost 1,000 artists are diligently preparing their works, of which there will be more than 60 in the end. They adorn a 1.5-kilometer long path in the old town of the 8,500-inhabitant village of Spello. Each piece of art, made entirely of flowers and petals, must be at least 12 meters long and cover an area of 24 square meters. The artists let their creativity run free from Saturday to Sunday during the night before the Corpus Christi procession.

Visit this charming Italian village, which shines in bloom and scatters delicious floral scent everywhere.


The green heart of Italy

Umbria is known as the “green heart of Italy” because of its lush green hills, fertile farmland, green valleys, wooded hills and mountains, the landscape is very reminiscent of Tuscany, but is a bit rougher and more untouched than the neighboring region.

The Lake Trasimeno, the largest lake in central Italy, is a favorite destination for Italians, but holidaymakers from other countries also love this oasis of relaxation: the 165m high waterfall “Cascate delle Marmore” near Terni, one of the highest Europe attracts half a million visitors every year. Umbria is an ideal holiday destination for hikers, cyclists and mountain bikers, but also for those who just want to relax in peace and quiet while on holiday.

Cascate delle Marmore – the tremendous power of the water

The Cascata delle Marmore is one of the highest waterfalls in Europe and was founded by the Romans in 271 BC. C. created for draining a wetland near the river Nera.

A masterpiece of Roman engineering that has become one of Umbria’s most spectacular natural sites. The Cascata delle Marmore offers five walkways to admire the cascades from different perspectives and to enjoy the natural beauty of this park to the fullest. The waterfalls pour into the river Nera amidst lush vegetation from over 165 m altitude and are as well a popular destination for canoe and kayakers. If you visit the waterfall during the Christmas season, you can expect the living flu in the waterfall itself.

Cascata Delle Marmore, Marmore

The fossil forest Dunarobba

The petrified forest of Danurobba is a rare example of a forest that existed three million years ago, whose trunks are still relatively well preserved and form a moon-like landscape.


The fossil forest was discovered in a clay quarry for bricks in the late 1970s. The remains of some fifty gigantic conifers that can be visited are an exceptional testimony to some plant species that grew on the Italian peninsula between 2 and 3 million years ago, in the so-called Pliocene. The largely buried under the clay layers forest indicates completely different environmental conditions compared to today with a much warmer climate than today. Explore this unique natural monument of great scientific importance.

Lago die Trasimeno – bathing, surfing and fishing

In the green heart of Umbria, between reeds and white water lilies lies Lake Trasimeno, the fourth largest in Italy. This natural paradise is rich in animal species, such as wild ducks, cormorants, and other griffons and kingfishers. The backdrops are the gentle hills and dense forests, and the broad sunflower and cornfields, as well as grapevines and olive groves.

Lake Trasimeno, Umbria wine region, Italy

However, the largest island of the lake (there are three islands) is the island of Polvese. It’s now an uninhabited area and is today a public park, where you can visit the ancient monastery of San Secondo, the church of San Giuliano and a recently restored 14th-century castle.
Be sure to plan a stop for swimming or water sports.


 

Try rare gastronomical specialties of Umbria

Umbria offers first-class regional cuisine, which has barely embarked on tourist compromises. Even in spoiled Italy such a down-to-earth, natural cuisine has become rare.

Umbria stands for truffles and simple peasant legumes, for the spicy scent of grilled meat, for fish, greenish iridescent olive oil and for generations handed down wild recipes.

Maltagliati con asparaghi e tartufi neri – A dish to melt away

Maltagliati (Italian for “badly cut”) are small Italian pasta slices made from dough pieces that are left from ravioli or lasagna. Maltagliati with asparagus and black truffle was declared by the author, the well-known TV chef Sante de Santis (2016), as a typical dish of Umbrian cuisine.

Besides Alba, Umbria is also known for its truffles. All kinds can be found in Umbria: white truffles, as well as the black summer and winter truffles. But the more important is the black Norcia truffle, which grows in Norcia and Spoleto. For this dish, an asparagus sauce is made from wine, cheese, truffle oil and at the end the pasta is rounded off with freshly planed truffles. Best combined with a powerful white wine from Orvieto.

Trüffel, Truffle, Lebensmittel

Cicerchiata – the sweet colorful pastries

Cicerchiata is a very old recipe made from simple ingredients such as flour, oil, and little sugar. The only luxury of this recipe is the honey and the colorful sugar globules scattered over it. It is a colorful dessert that is typical of the carnival.

For this, a dough of flour, eggs, lemon zest and a few drops of the liqueur Alchermes and butter is kneaded. From the dough, small balls are formed and deep-fried in plenty of oil. Peeled almonds are sliced and honey is heated until it colors. In a bowl, the honey and the balls are mixed and the almonds and diced candied fruits and colorful sugar pearls added. Then a cake tin with a hole in the middle is greased and the mass is added so that it cools and takes the ring shape of the cake tin.

Tortino di patate con lenticchie e tartufo bianco – a typical regional dish

Among the antipasti is always the famous Tortino di patate con lenticchie e tartufo bianco very famous in Umbria, a casserole with a base of lentils. On the layer of lenses very thinly sliced potato slices are alternately layered with mushrooms and herbs and then sprinkled with white truffles. This dish combines, thanks to its ingredients, three gastronomic areas of Umbria: the area of Castelluccio with its excellent lentils, the plains of Colfiorito with its potatoes and the valley of Valtopina with its white truffles.


Visit wineries in Umbria and discover more gastronomical specialties of the region paired with local wines.

Check out wine tastings & tours in Umbria to learn what the regions has to offer!


 

Share about Umbria wine region:

Region Highlights

Surface: 16.500
Wineries:
Soil: clay, limestone
Climate: Mediterranean

Selected wineries in Umbria

Adanti Azienda Agricola
Wine estate famous for making wines protected as Montefalco Rosso and Sagrantino
Antonelli San Marco
Historic winery producing Montefalco wines that are certified organic since 2012
Azienda Agricola Bocale
Meet the family that has been producing wines from over hundred years.
Benincasa
Pay a visit to the first winery to register with the Montefalco Sagrantino winemaking region.

Wine tastings & tours in Umbria

Wine tasting and tour at Adanti Azienda Agricola
Visit the Adanti winery for Montefalco DOCG wine tasting and guided winery tour
Wine tasting and tour at Antonelli San Marco
Visit the Antonelli San Marco for Montefalco wine tasting and a guided winery tour
Wine tasting and tour at Azienda Agricola Bocale
Enjoy your wine tasting and guided tour in the charming vineyards and cellar at Azienda Agricola Bocale
Wine tasting and tour at Benincasa
Enjoy a unique tasting experience, paired with a guided tour through the vine rows and cellar at Benincasa

Other Wine Regions in Italy

Abruzzo
Where many regions of Italy are united. On our website, book visits to beautiful wineries in Abruzzo and enjoy guided wine tasting and tour.
Basilicata
A beautiful mountainous region between the seas. There are a big number of wineries in Basilicata with wine tasting and tour activities that you can book easily via winetourism.com.
Calabria
Calabria is a jewel on the toe of Italy. Calabria has a large number of wineries that offer wine tasting and tour. Visit our website to book beautiful wine-filled experiences and learn more about the wine region.
Campania
In Campania you find yourself in the shadow of Mount Vesuvius. There are a big number of wineries in Campania with wine tasting and tour activities that you can book easily via winetourism.com.

Map of Wineries in Umbria wine region

Discover the long wine tradition of Umbria and discover some of the best wineries in this region

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List of Wineries in Umbria wine region

Adanti Azienda Agricola