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Why can’t you make Prosecco in the USA?

The question “Why can’t you make Prosecco in the USA?” delves into the intricacies of wine appellations and geographical indications. The key reason lies in the legal protection of “Prosecco,” closely tied to its Italian origins. You can’t name wines from any other region Prosecco. That’s because Prosecco is a specific type of sparkling wine with geographical and methodological associations to specific regions in Italy, particularly the Veneto and Friuli Venezia Giulia regions. See also this FAQ.

This unique identity of Prosecco is safeguarded under European law, which stipulates that only sparkling wine produced in these designated regions of Italy can legally be labeled as Prosecco. T

he protection is similar to that of Champagne, which is exclusive to the Champagne region in France. This means that even if a winemaker in the USA uses the same grape variety (Glera) and the same production methods (such as the Charmat method), the resulting wine cannot be called Prosecco if it is not made in the specified Italian regions​​.

The Charmat method, integral to Prosecco’s production, involves fermenting the wine in large steel tanks and then inducing a second fermentation in pressurized tanks to create the wine’s bubbles. While this method can be replicated outside Italy, the resulting sparkling wine must be labeled differently due to Prosecco’s protected status.

This geographical indication ensures that Prosecco retains its unique characteristics influenced by the specific terroir of its Italian regions. These legal protections are crucial in maintaining Prosecco’s quality, reputation, and authenticity as a product of Italy.

For brands like Bella Principessa Prosecco and Signorina Prosecco, which are true Proseccos, their production in the designated Italian regions underlines their authenticity and adherence to the traditional methods and standards that define Prosecco.