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Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

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The crescent-shaped strip that runs along Italy’s Mediterranean coast from the French border to the edge of Tuscany is Italy’s third smallest wine-producing region after the Valle d’Aosta and Molise. See map under italy, and see genoa, vernaccia, and italy for some historical detail. The extremely rugged terrain—the Apennines descend virtually all the way to the sea—combined with the minute size of individual properties make agriculture in general and viticulture in particular a marginal activity, and the greater economic possibilities offered by the thriving tourist industry, commercial flower-, vegetable-, and olive-growing have steadily drained manpower from the region’s vineyards ever since the Second World War. However, Liguria’s total vineyard area, 1,568 ha/3,873 acres, has been stable in recent years, with more than half of it dedicated to the production of doc wine.