DOCG vs. DOC Prosecco: Top wine writers spar over Prosecco’s place in the world of wine

uva e prosecco

Prosecco is one of the wine world’s most lucrative categories. It can cause tempers to flare.

DOCG Prosecco is grown in the morainic hills of Conegliano, Valdobbiadene, and Asolo townships. DOC Prosecco is grown in the valley floor of Treviso province. This week, two of the world’s top wine writers — Master of Wine Richard Hemming and Walter Speller, both contributors to — addressed the roles of the two categories in the wine world today. We highly recommend reading both posts.

In his article, Hemming bemoans the commercialization of Prosecco, including the ways that the wine has been co-opted in a wide variety of commercial products that have nothing to do with wine or dining.

“What do lip balm, bath salts, chocolates, scented candles, tea bags and jam have in common?” he writes in “The bottom end of sparkling.”

“They’ve all co-opted Prosecco into unlikely product extensions,” he notes.

“Once trumpeted as the preferable alternative to boring old champagne, too much Prosecco has decomposed into something cheap and tasteless. So how has Prosecco become the slut of sparkling, lending its name to anything that can hold liquid?” he asks.

It’s a really compelling piece that traces the arc of Prosecco’s rise in the sparkling world.

Speller, on the other hand, seemed to take issue with Hemming’s omission of the DOCG producers and growers in his piece.

Referencing the passage quoted from Hemming above in the title — “In defence of sluts” — Speller writes:

“Although it is hardly rocket science, most wine professionals, including many in the UK, seem unable to grasp the difference between Prosecco DOC and Conegliano Valdobbiadene DOCG… The first is vast; the second is tiny, with different production regulations, lower yields and higher quality. (Incidentally, the latter is also working towards 100% sustainability, with the future prospect of becoming 100% organic.) But all this, I suspect, doesn’t fit in the UK Prosecco narrative, because none of this is even once mentioned in Richard’s article.”

Both pieces are extremely interesting and engaging. We are big fans of Jancis Robinsons’ site and we recommend both articles to you! As producers of organically farmed DOCG Prosecco, we believe that both arguments are key to understanding Prosecco today.

Thanks for reading!

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