Italy has been known for fine quality wines for many centuries now. A worthy rival to the neighbouring country, France, Italy boasts around 400 different varieties of grape, so there really is something for everyone here. But which are the best wine regions?

The region of Veneto can be found in the northeast of the country and it is widely considered to be one of the most important because of the vast quantity of wine produced here each year. It is a good producer of Prosecco, Soave and a variety of red wines.

The Marche and Abruzzo regions of Italy can be found right next to each other at the centre of the country. They are mainly known for producing red Montepulciano and white Verdicchio from the thousands of hectares of vineyards. The wine has been produced here since Roman times.

Tuscany is probably one of the most famous regions of Italy and not just because of the wine produced here. This is another region that produces vast quantities of wine each year and all kinds of tastes are catered for. One of the most-used grapes is the Sangiovese grape – a grape used in different wines including Chianti.

A major rival to Tuscany is Piedmont. This region has more DOCG wines – the Italian quality standard – than any of the others and varieties produced here include Barolo.

Lombardy is larger in area but this doesn’t mean that it has more famous wines. In fact, there are just two famous wines that originate from the Lombardy region. These are Lambrusco and Franciacorta – both sparkling wines that are extremely popular. Lugana is a smaller region located in Lombardy and the wines that come from this part are considered to be of very good quality.

There are a number of other Italian regions that produce fine wines, but sometimes the easiest way to determine which are the best is to sample one or two!