This is Not Your Typical Montepulciano d’Abruzzo

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Located in Abruzzo on Italy’s central coast, Codice Citra was founded in 1973 with a focus on cultivating quality, indigenous grape varieties – from the well-known Montepulciano and Trebbiano – to lesser known varieties such as Pecorino, Passerina, and Cococciola. Each variety expresses the unique terroirs and microclimates of the region. When the warm wind from the Adriatic Sea meets the cool air coming down from the Majella Mountains, the temperature drops, blowing a cooling wind through the valleys. This phenomenon, known as the “brezza di terra,” provides an ideal climate for vine development.

In 2017, Codice Citra introduced renowned winemaker Riccardo Cotarella as its new executive enologist. With more than 30 years’ experience working with varieties and regions throughout Italy, Cotarella was eager to partner with Citra in its efforts to elevate Abruzzo as a world-class wine region. Together they have a determined vision for the future – to balance innovative viticultural study and practice with a dedication to producing wines of the highest class made from indigenous grapes.

Codice Citra is sub-divided into four ranges of wine, which together showcase the quality and potential of Abruzzo:


Citra is Codice Citra’s most historical line. Now with Cotarella’s precise vinification techniques and custom blending, these eight wines offer clean varietal expressions that provide the perfect introduction to Abruzzo: Trebbiano d’Abruzzo, Pinot Grigio Terre di Chieti, Chardonnay Terre di Chieti, Rosato Terre di Chieti, Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, Sangiovese Terre di Chieti, Merlot Terre di Chieti, and Cabernet Sauvignon Terre di Chieti.


Never before presented in the United States, Ferzo is a line of wines that offers a view of southern Abruzzo. Ferzo, which refers to a patch of fabric that is stitched together with others to create a sail, is a union of the finest viticultural “patches” that embrace the region’s indigenous grapes, which are handharvested from 20-year-old vines. The five wines from Ferzo include: Passerina Terre di Chieti, Cococciola Terre di Chieti, Pecorino Terre di Chieti, Rosato Terre di Chieti, and Montepulciano d’Abruzzo.


Caroso is a singular expression of Chieti’s top cru. While most of southern Abruzzo’s hills run perpendicular to the sea in the east and the mountains in the west, the hills of Chieti province run parallel to the Adriatic, which creates a unique microclimate. With Caroso, Codice Citra has made an elegant and powerful Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Riserva.


With Laus Vitae, meaning “praise to life,” the winery has bottled its celebration of life with a refined Montepulciano d’Abruzzo from 40-year-old hand-harvested vines from an exclusive high-altitude vineyard.

Published on November 5, 2018