— Conegliano Valdobbiadene

The history of Prosecco in the hills of Conegliano Valdobbiadene


Vine-growing has been widespread in the Conegliano Valdobbiadene zone since ancient times. A memorial stone in the area recalls the words of a Roman centurion, mentioning the vendemmiales, celebrations on the occasion of the grape harvest


Quo Vineta Vernatur, Sub Monte Jugo Calvo, Quo Viror Umbrosus Tegit Sicca Metalla


VI Century

San Venanzio Fortunato, Bishop of Poitiers (530-607), describes Valdobbiadene, his place of origin, thus: "Quo Vineta Vernatur, Sub Monte Jugo Calvo, Quo Viror Umbrosus Tegit Sicca Metalla" (“an area where vines bud below the high mountains, and in which the lush greenery protects the more barren zones”)


XII Century

A 12th century fresco on the external façade of the parish church of San Pietro di Feletto portrays the “Sunday Christ”. The warning is clear: those who work on Sundays make Christ suffer (we see him bleeding, surrounded by tools for work). Thank to these we can understand what were the typical jobs in these hills at that time, and how vines and wine were already part of everyday life.



In 1574, when King Henry III of Poland passed through on his way to Paris to be crowned King of France, the community of Conegliano made the white wine from its hills pour all day from the Fountain of Neptune


“Ed or ora immolarmi voglio il becco
Con quel melaromatico Prosecco”
(“Now I want to give up my mouth
To that apple-scented Prosecco”)



In 1754, Aureliano Acanti in his “Il Roccolo, Ditirambo” cites "Prosecco". It is the first written mention of the name


“Who does not know how exquisite are our Marzeminos, Bianchettos, Proseccos, Moscatellos, Malvasias, Glossari and others, that are grown on various hills near here, when they are indeed made with the greater care required by these grape varieties and by the land where they are cultivated?”



Francesco Maria Malvolti (1725-1807), in Volume VIII of the Giornale d’Italia of 1772, links Prosecco for the first time with Conegliano Valdobbiadene


“a quarter of the above “square perches” (I cannot be absolutely precise about the quantity), is all devoted to vineyards, which I planted with Prosecco vines, more dependable and fertile than any other variety, and which yield an outstanding white wine, full of grace and strength”



Count Marco Giulio Balbi Valier, famous for identifying and selecting a type of Prosecco vine that was better than the others and known as “Prosecco Balbi”, published a booklet in 1868 in which he described his own crops



In 1876, Conegliano’s School of Winemaking was founded, the first of its kind in Italy



In 1923, the foundation of the Experimental Station for Viticulture and Oenology took place in Conegliano



In the 1930s the boundaries of the production area for Prosecco were outlined



In 1946 the Brotherhood of Prosecco was founded


7th June 1962

11 producers formed the Consorzio di Tutela del Prosecco di Conegliano e Valdobbiadene (Consortium for the Protection of Prosecco from Conegliano and Valdobbiadene)



The first Sparkling Wine Exhibition was inaugurated in Valdobbiadene



The Strada del Prosecco was set up, the first recognized Wine Road in Italy


2nd April 1969

Denominazione di Origine Controllata status was granted to the Prosecco produced in the 15 communes between Conegliano and Valdobbiadene


1960s and ’70s

An important contribution to improving the quality of production was given by Prof. Tullio De Rosa, author of important texts such as Tecnologia dei Vini Spumanti, a work of reference in perfecting the Conegliano Valdobbiadene method of making sparkling wines, studied by generations of students



The Denomination was awarded the status of First Sparkling Wine District in Italy



The District’s Research Centre was founded. The results of the studies carried out by this body are presented every year in December.


1st August 2009

Conegliano Valdobbiadene became Italy’s 44th D.O.C.G.