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News / 11/12/2021 / 1030

A PARENT OF GRAŠAC FINALLY DETERMINED

This year, a group of Italian scientists led by Professor Claudio D'Onofrio conducted extensive research based on DNA analysis of hundreds of Italian grape varieties to determine their relationships and identify synonyms and main varieties from which many Italian grape varieties originated. However, the results of the research are also important for the winemaking of Central Europe, because among numerous Italian varieties, Grašac (Italian Riesling) was also within scope of the research. We're gradually expanding our knowledge and understanding about the key regional grape variety of Central Europe. 

The research led to conclusion that key varieties for the area of northwestern Italy are Termarina (Sciaccarello), Orsolina and Uva Tosca, because a large number of grape varieties originated from them.

Photo © C. D'Onofrio et al.

Orsolina has been shown to be the parent of numerous grape varieties from central and northeastern Italy. Two triplets (offspring - parent 1 - parent 2) were discovered, in which the offspring is Vespolina (parents Nebbiolo x Orsolina) and Moscato Nero di Acqui (parents Moscato Bianco x Orsolina). For us, the most important finding is the parent-offspring relationship established between Orsolina and two widely known grape varieties (Barbera and Grašac).

Orsolina was first mentioned in written sources in 1800 among grape varieties from the Apennines in Emilia-Romagna region, and is historically known by the synonyms Coccalona nera (in Piedmont) and Rohrtraube Blaurot (in Germany). A large group of varieties that are related to Orsolina includes mainly varieties from northern and northeastern Italy. It has been established that 25 offspring come from Orsolina, mostly varieties from Emilia Romagna and Tuscany. And most importantly, the study confirmed that Barbera and Grašac (Italian Riesling) are related since both of these varieties are descendants of Orsolina.

Photo © C. D'Onofrio et al.




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Tomislav Ivanović

Awarded wine writer, wine critic and contributor to selected wine magazines. WSET3-certified author and editor-in-chief of www.vinopedia.rs. Member of Vojvodina Sommelier Association. Juror in national and international wine competitions. Lecturing about wines of Serbia and the Balkans. Local partner of Wine Mosaic organization. Co-founder of International Prokupac Day.

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