Le sottozone del Romagna Sangiovese: Imola | Consorzio Vini di Romagna
Mosaico di Vita | Consorzio Vini di Romagna
October 2023 | Territory

The Sub-Zones of Romagna Sangiovese: Imola

The northernmost sub-zone and one of the largest, Imola is the gateway to the rich mosaic of Romagna Sangiovese sub-zones.

Sangiovese has deep roots in Imola, dating back to the late 1700s when the variety became a distinctive element of the region. A study from 1880 identified it as one of the most widespread grape varieties in Imola, second only to Albana. And the tradition continues to this day: an agricultural census in 2010 reports that the total vineyard area in the province of Bologna amounts to 3,932 hectares, of which 26% (1,039 hectares) is cultivated with Sangiovese. 70% of said area is located south of the Via Aemilia, proving the abundance and exceptional quality reached by the variety in the territory of Imola.  

Imola’s countryside is bountiful, with gentle hills stretching between 60 to 400 meters asl. The soil is predominantly red, especially in the lower areas, becoming lighter and more calcareous at higher altitudes. This is an essential detail for understanding the wines produced in this region: the red soil indicates the presence of clay and its color results from the amount of iron contained, a relatively unoxidized type of iron that is present in soils of more recent formation compared to other regions. 

The climate in Imola is slightly more continental, with warm and generally dry summers, ideal for producing Sangiovese with intense color as well as enveloping, fragrant and fruity aromas that recall dark cherries – which are particularly exceptional in these areas – often accompanied by hints of maraschino and, at times, fresh almond notes. 

Wines from Imola reveal a distinctive character: full body as well as tannins and alcohol content that prevail over acidity. Imola yields vigorous Sangiovese wines that stand out for their energy and persistence, especially during sunnier vintages, which have become more common in recent decades.