9.9.2019   

EN

Official Journal of the European Union

C 304/12


Publication of a communication of approval of a standard amendment to a product specification for a name in the wine sector referred to in Article 17(2) and (3) of Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2019/33

(2019/C 304/07)

This communication is published in accordance with the fifth paragraph of Article 17 of Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2019/33 (1).

COMMUNICATING THE APPROVAL OF A STANDARD AMENDMENT

‘Bianco di Custoza’/‘Custoza’

Reference number: PDO-IT-A0468-AM02

Date of communication: 24.6.2019

DESCRIPTION AND REASONS OF THE APPROVED AMENDMENT

1.   Article 1 of the product specification: Name and wines

Description and reasons

Description:

Addition of the riserva category

Reasons:

The addition of a riserva category of ‘Custoza’ wines enhances the quality of the name, better expressing the characteristics related to ageing that are specific to this category.

This amendment also entails changes to sections 1.4. (Description of the wine(s)) and 1.5. (Wine making practicesMaximum yields) of the single document.

2.   Article 2 of the product specification: Grape varieties

Description and reasons

Description:

Revision of the main varieties and percentages: Bianca Fernanda has been added to the three existing compulsory varieties, Garanega, Trebbiano Toscano and Trebbianello (a local biotype of Tocai Friulano), which must now make up at least 70 % of the grapes used, with none of them individually exceeding 45 %

Reasons:

To reflect traditional practice in the area, Bianca Fernanda has been included as a compulsory variety. Having these four main varieties make up a minimum of 70 % of the grapes used and limiting each individual variety to no more than 45 % means that no single type will make up more than 31,5 %. As a result, under the new proposal ‘Bianco di Custoza’/‘Custoza’ DOC must necessarily be made with at least three of the four main varieties. While this is already the case under the current specification, this amendment confers the advantage of being able to use the four varieties on grounds of quality, considering how the season is progressing, the time of harvesting, the vineyard location or specific aspects of production.

Bianca Fernanda (a local Cortese clone) accounts for over 13 % of the area under vines in the ‘Custoza’ production area and is locally recognised as synonymous with ‘Custoza’. The addition of Bianca Fernanda as one of the four main grape varieties brings the name a strong element of quality and reputation.

This amendment also entails changes to sections 1.4. (Description of the wine(s)) and 1.7. (Main wine grapes variety(ies)) of the single document.

3.   Article 4 of the product specification: Rules on wine-growing

Description and reasons

Description:

(a)

Use of the superiore, riserva, spumante (sparkling wine) and passito (raisin wine) categories

(b)

Removal of the reference to the possibility of using ‘Custoza’ vineyard plots to produce ‘Garda’ DOC wines

(c)

Reduction of yield per hectare for ‘Custoza’ to 13 tonnes

(d)

Addition of a table detailing maximum yields and alcoholic strengths for the different categories

(e)

Rewording of the paragraph on selecting the grapes for passito wines without changing any of the parameter values

(f)

Addition of four paragraphs stating that, if requested by the protection association and following consultation of professional organisations, the regional authorities may: take decisions regarding the different purposes/uses of the grapes and the maximum limit of grapes per hectare to be used; reduce the authorised grape and wine yields; and authorise the stockpiling of surplus yield for future use up to 20 % over the maximum yield

Reasons:

(a)

This is to reflect the changes made to Article 1.

(b)

This possibility is established in national legislation and no longer needs to be included in the product specification.

(c)

The yield per hectare needs to be reduced to increase the quality implied by the name. In any case, this change merely brings production into line with how the vines are now actually planted, with the old system having been entirely replaced by planting in rows. Analysis shows that the trend in the amount of the wine bottled in the last five years has been more or less stable, and that the market is capable of absorbing only part of the wine produced, with only a small percentage sold at prices that are likely to return a profit for the winemakers and contribute to shaping a reputation of quality for these wines on national and international markets. The winemakers have therefore decisively chosen to cut the amount of production to be marketed as ‘Custoza’ DOC and use the rest for other wines.

(d)

A table of figures is needed to make the specification easier to interpret.

(e)

This text needs to be rewritten to make the specification easier to interpret.

(f)

The text now includes a number of wine-growing rules to be applied in certain specific conditions.

This amendment also entails changes to section 1.5. (Wine making practicesMaximum yields) of the single document.

4.   Article 5 of the product specification: Rules on wine-making

Description and reasons

Description:

Inclusion of the possibility of making the different varieties into wine separately or all together, specifying that, when the grapes are made into separate wines, these must be blended at the winemaker's premises and always before applying to have the wine certified for release onto the market

Raising of the grape-to-wine yield from 65 % to 70 % for ‘Custoza’, ‘Custoza’spumante, ‘Custoza’superiore and ‘Custoza’riserva, and presentation of yields in a table

Limit of 15 % imposed on the blending-in of wine from a different vintage, restricting this practice to the previous year's wine and requiring that blending-in take place by 31 December of the year the grapes are grown

Addition of a date for releasing ‘Custoza’ for consumption: 1 December of the year the grapes are grown

Addition of the riserva category, aged at least 12 months from 1 November of the year of production

Insertion of three paragraphs stating that, if requested by the protection association and following consultation of professional organisations, the regional authorities may set a ceiling for the amount of wine that can be certified that is lower than that set in the specification, thus keeping in bulk form any musts and wines obtained from surplus grapes, which, at the request of the protection association, may be certified.

Reasons:

The grape-to-wine yield has been increased to 70 % so that the rules actually reflect the yields being achieved by winemakers as a result of advances in technology throughout the production area over the last 15 years.

The limit on the amount of older wine that can be blended in and the restriction of this to the previous year's wine only have been introduced in the interests of quality.

A date for releasing wines for consumption has been introduced with a view to improving quality.

The addition of the riserva category for ‘Custoza’ wines is an element that enhances the quality implied by the name. ‘Custoza’ wines of recognised quality aged at least 12 months have been present on the market for many years. These are essentially wines with a long ageing period, intended for the more mature Italian and international markets.

These last three paragraphs have been added to bring the text into line with legislation.

This amendment also entails changes to section 1.5. (Wine making practicesMaximum yields) of the single document.

5.   Article 6 of the product specification: Characteristics on consumption

Description and reasons

Description:

(a)

Addition of the colour descriptor for ‘Custoza’

(b)

Increase of minimum sugar-free extract to 17 g per litre

(c)

Addition of chemical, physical and organoleptic characteristics for the new riserva category

(d)

New description of the flavour of spumante (sparkling) wines as ‘zero dosage to demi-sec

(e)

Insertion of a final paragraph stating that wines from any of the categories may also have hints of wood if they have been wood-aged

Reasons:

(a)

This addition ensures that the colour of this wine is correctly detailed.

(b)

The intention behind this change is to adapt the product specification to the fact that ‘Custoza’ wines on the market already have higher values for this parameter.

(c)

This is the addition of the characteristics of the new riserva category, which was not in the previous product specification.

(d)

This change has been made in response to marketing requirements.

(e)

This wording is clearer than the previous version, ensuring a more precise description.

This amendment also entails changes to section 1.4. (Description of the wine(s)) of the single document.

6.   Article 8 of the product specification: Packaging

Description and reasons

Description:

(a)

Addition of a rule that ‘Custoza’, ‘Custoza’superiore, ‘Custoza’riserva and ‘Custoza’passito may only be placed on the market in glass bottles of up to 9 litres, and may not be marketed in the recipients known as dama and fiasco

(b)

Permission to use glass containers of up to 18 litres for the spumante (sparkling) category

(c)

Addition of a rule stating that winemakers within the production area described in Article 3, and no other parties, may sell ‘Custoza’ (but not any of the additional categories) directly to end customers in recipients of up to 60 litres, following traditional practice

(d)

Explanation that the permitted use of non-glass recipients (bag-in-a-box) does not apply to the superiore and riserva categories

(e)

Permission to use any type of closure allowed by law

Reasons:

(a)

The product specification currently only states that superiore, passito (raisin wine) and spumante (sparkling wine) must be packaged in glass bottles. The proposed amendment extends this obligation to cover all ‘Custoza’ wines. This is a very important step in enhancing the reputation of this historical name, also with a view to re-positioning the wines on the market and building their reputation.

(b)

This allows the use of the formats most often requested on the market.

(c)

This is permitted because there is a local tradition of end consumers purchasing ‘Custoza’ in bulk.

(d)

This gives greater clarity.

(e)

This change brings the text into line with legislation.

SINGLE DOCUMENT

1.   Name of product

‘Bianco di Custoza’

‘Custoza’

2.   Geographical indication type

PDO — Protected Designation of Origin

3.   Categories of grapevine products

1.

Wine

5.

Quality sparkling wine

4.   Description of the wine(s)

‘Bianco di Custoza’/‘Custoza’ including riserva, superiore, spumante (sparkling wine) and passito (raisin wine) categories

The characteristic colour of the wines is a straw yellow of varying intensity, sometimes with greenish hints in younger wines or golden tones in certain selected wines. The bouquet is fruity and slightly aromatic, with hints of flowers and occasionally also herbs and spices. The wines have a fresh, mellow and delicate flavour.

These are highly drinkable wines that are easily paired. They are generally to be drunk young, although some selections made at the vineyards are capable of retaining their characteristics over time.

The minimum total alcoholic strength is 11,0 % ABV and the minimum sugar-free extract is 16,5 g per litre.

General analytical characteristics

Maximum total alcoholic strength (in % volume)

 

Minimum actual alcoholic strength (in % volume)

 

Minimum total acidity

4,5 expressed as grams of tartaric acid per litre

Maximum volatile acidity (in milliequivalents per litre)

 

Maximum total sulphur dioxide (in milligrams per litre)

 

‘Bianco di Custoza’/‘Custoza’

Colour: straw yellow, sometimes with hints of pale green;

Bouquet: fruity, distinctive and slightly aromatic

Taste: flavourful, delicate, with just the right amount of body

Minimum total alcoholic strength: 11 % ABV

Minimum sugar-free extract: 17 g per litre

Residual reducing sugars: maximum 7 g per litre

Wherever the value is left blank in the table below, the wines comply with the limits laid down in national and EU legislation.

General analytical characteristics

Maximum total alcoholic strength (in % volume)

 

Minimum actual alcoholic strength (in % volume)

 

Minimum total acidity

4,5 expressed as grams of tartaric acid per litre

Maximum volatile acidity (in milliequivalents per litre)

 

Maximum total sulphur dioxide (in milligrams per litre)

 

‘Bianco di Custoza’riserva/‘Custoza’riserva

Colour: straw yellow to golden of varying intensity

Bouquet: intense, distinctive and slightly aromatic

Taste: balanced, flavourful, with just the right amount of body

Minimum total alcoholic strength: 12,5 % ABV

Minimum sugar-free extract: 20 g/l

Residual reducing sugars: maximum 7 g per litre

Wherever the value is left blank in the table below, the wines comply with the limits laid down in national and EU legislation.

General analytical characteristics

Maximum total alcoholic strength (in % volume)

 

Minimum actual alcoholic strength (in % volume)

 

Minimum total acidity

4,5 expressed as grams of tartaric acid per litre

Maximum volatile acidity (in milliequivalents per litre)

 

Maximum total sulphur dioxide (in milligrams per litre)

 

‘Bianco di Custoza’superiore/‘Custoza’superiore

Colour: straw yellow to golden with ageing

Bouquet: pleasant, distinctive and slightly aromatic

Taste: balanced, full-bodied

Minimum total alcoholic strength: 12,50 % ABV

Minimum sugar-free extract: 20 g/l

Residual reducing sugars: 7 g per litre

Wherever the value is left blank in the table below, the wines comply with the limits laid down in national and EU legislation.

General analytical characteristics

Maximum total alcoholic strength (in % volume)

 

Minimum actual alcoholic strength (in % volume)

 

Minimum total acidity

4,5 expressed as grams of tartaric acid per litre

Maximum volatile acidity (in milliequivalents per litre)

 

Maximum total sulphur dioxide (in milligrams per litre)

 

‘Bianco di Custoza’spumante/‘Custoza’spumante

Foam: fine, long-lasting

Colour: straw yellow of varying intensity, possibly with flashes of gold

Bouquet: fragrant, fruity, and slightly aromatic when made using the Charmat method; fine, elegant and distinctive if fermented in the bottle;

Taste: fresh, flavourful, fine and balanced; zero dosage to demi-sec

Minimum total alcoholic strength: 11,5 % ABV

Minimum sugar-free extract: 15 g/l

Wherever the value is left blank in the table below, the wines comply with the limits laid down in national and EU legislation.

General analytical characteristics

Maximum total alcoholic strength (in % volume)

 

Minimum actual alcoholic strength (in % volume)

 

Minimum total acidity

5,0 expressed as grams of tartaric acid per litre

Maximum volatile acidity (in milliequivalents per litre)

 

Maximum total sulphur dioxide (in milligrams per litre)

 

‘Bianco di Custoza’passito/‘Custoza’passito

Colour: golden yellow

Bouquet: intense and fruity

Taste: from pleasant to sweet, balanced, with a slightly aromatic body

Minimum total alcoholic strength: 15 % ABV

Minimum sugar-free extract: 22 g/l

Wherever the value is left blank in the table below, the wines comply with the limits laid down in national and EU legislation.

General analytical characteristics

Maximum total alcoholic strength (in % volume)

 

Minimum actual alcoholic strength (in % volume)

12,00

Minimum total acidity

4,5 expressed as grams of tartaric acid per litre

Maximum volatile acidity (in milliequivalents per litre)

 

Maximum total sulphur dioxide (in milligrams per litre)

 

5.   Wine making practices

a.   Essential oenological practices

NONE

b.   Maximum yields

‘Bianco di Custoza’/‘Custoza’

13 000 kg of grapes per hectare

‘Bianco di Custoza’superiore/‘Custoza’superiore

12 000 kg of grapes per hectare

‘Bianco di Custoza’riserva/‘Custoza’riserva

13 000 kg of grapes per hectare

‘Bianco di Custoza’spumante/‘Custoza’spumante

13 000 kg of grapes per hectare

‘Bianco di Custoza’passito/‘Custoza’passito

5 000 kg of grapes per hectare

6.   Demarcated geographical area

‘Bianco di Custoza’/‘Custoza’ DOC wines are produced in an area spanning all or part of the following municipalities: Sommacampagna, Villafranca di Verona, Valeggio sul Mincio, Peschiera del Garda, Lazise, Castelnuovo del Garda, Pastrengo, Bussolengo and Sona. The area is demarcated as follows: starting south of Sommacampagna, from the district of Cesure (altitude 89 m), the boundary runs southwest along the irrigation channel of the Alto Agro Veronese drainage and land improvement board as far as Boscone, joining the road to Villafranca for a short stretch before merging onto the municipal road which passes through Pozzomoretto and Colombara. The boundary then joins the next municipal road near Cà Delia, following this road past C. Nuova Pigno and Le Grattarole as far as the junction with the Villafranca-Valeggio provincial road, which it then joins as far as the town of Valeggio sul Mincio. It then runs south along the municipal road towards Pozzolo as far as C. Buse, where it merges onto the road that crosses the Seriola Prevaldesca irrigation channel, which it follows northwards as far as the bridge known as the Ponte Lungo. After crossing this bridge the boundary follows the Seriosa Serenelli irrigation channel southbound as far as the border with the Province of Mantua and Region of Lombardy (altitude 63 m). The boundary line then returns northbound along the regional border, passing through Pignolada, Staffalonero, Prandina, Stazione di Salionze, Villa, Dolci and Pontata, then turns away from the border to follow the Broglie-Madonna del Frassino road for a very brief stretch towards the north-east as far as the point near Pignolini where it crosses the Serenissima motorway. It then follows the track that passes to the east of Cà Gozzetto, goes through Cà Serraglio, passes to the west of altitude point 101 m, and ends at Cà Berra Nuova (altitude 91 m) on the shores of Lake Frassino. The boundary then runs along the shore of the lake for a short stretch, merging onto the track that passes through Bertoletta, and arrives at the railway way hut at altitude 84 m. It then follows the railway to the east up to the next way hut at altitude 84 m before turning off onto the road that passes Villa Montresor and continues up to Cappuccini on the shore of Lake Garda. From Cappuccini the boundary line follows the eastern shore of Lake Garda before turning inland then near the port of Pacengo, following the track past the 93 m and 107 m altitude points and below Pacengo to Cà Allegri. It then follows the Pacengo municipal road as far as C. Fontana Fredda, before climbing another track, passing altitude 122 m, as far as Le Tende. From there it takes the Pacengo-Colà road as far as C. alle Croci before descending south-east following the track past altitude points 118 m and 113 m and through Sarnighe, meeting the boundary between the municipalities of Lazise and Castelnuovo at altitude 112 m. The line then climbs again, heading north along that municipal boundary before merging onto the border between the municipalities of Lazise and Pastrengo near Mirandola. If follows that border until it crosses the Verona-Lago provincial road to the west of Osteria Vecchia, joining that road towards Verona (East) until it reaches the point near Bussolengo where it merges with the Cristo municipal road near altitude 130 m. It then continues along the Palazzolo municipal road as far as the point where the Brenner motorway intersects the Bussolengo-Sona municipal boundary. The line then follows that municipal boundary southbound as far as Civel, where it merges onto the Bussolengo-Sommacampagna provincial road, which it follows until, having crossed Sommacampagna, it meets the road towards Custoza, which it follows as far as the starting point at Cesure. West of Broglie, the area also includes a small territory in the municipality of Peschiera del Garda, including the area of Monte Zecchino, and delimited as follows: from the track to the south of Broglie (next to the old primary school), the boundary line runs west towards Cà Boschetti and Cà Rondinelli then follows the provincial and regional border past Cà Boffei, Soregone, Cà Nuova Bazzoli. It then follows the road towards Broglie until it crosses the track where the line began.

7.   Main wine grapes variety(ies)

 

Pinot bianco (W) [Pinot blanc]

 

Trebbiano toscano (W) — Trebbiano

 

Trebbiano toscano (W) — Biancame (W)

 

Trebbiano toscano (W) — Ugni blanc

 

Trebbiano toscano (W) — Procanico

 

Riesling italico (W) — Riesling [Italian Riesling]

 

Riesling renano (W) — Riesling [Weisser Riesling]

 

Tocai friulano (W)

 

Tocai friulano (W) — Tuchì

 

Garganega (W) — Grecanico dorato (W)

 

Pinot bianco (W) — Pinot blanc

 

Malvasia bianca (W) — Malvasia

 

Malvasia bianca (W) — Verdina

 

Malvasia bianca (W) — Iuvarella

 

Manzoni bianco (W) — Incrocio Manzoni 6.0.13 W [Manzoni hybrid]

 

Garganega (W) — Garganego

 

Chardonnay (W)

 

Cortese (W) — Bianca Fernanda

 

Pinot bianco (W) — Pinot

8.   Description of the link(s)

‘Bianco di Custoza’/‘Custoza’

Specific features of the geographical area

Natural factors

‘Custoza’ wines are produced in a relatively small area occupying much of the southern part of the moraine hills that lie between the outskirts of Verona and Lake Garda.

The production area is bordered to the south-west by the river Mincio.

The area spans both parts of the eastern moraine amphitheatre inland from Lake Garda and the closely related fluvio-glacial plains, which are composed of similar materials albeit not strictly from the same origins.

In more detail, the moraine landscape that characterises the ‘Custoza’ DOC production area is shaped by a dense set of elongated hills placed in concentric formation. These do not tend to be steep, with rises and drops of between 50 and 100 metres. As these hills were formed by the deposits left by the same glaciers that formed the nearby Lake Garda, they feature a very varied soil structure, interspersed with broad gravelly plains.

The small size and considerable uniformity of the ‘Custoza’ DOC production area means that climate conditions are essentially the same throughout. The area features hot, but not suffocating, summers and relatively cold winters that are alleviated by its proximity to Lake Garda, creating a microclimate that is not only favourable for vines but also for the olive trees and cypresses that are a distinguishing feature of the local surroundings.

Rainfall is spread fairly evenly over the year.

The way the hills are arranged means that the slopes are heated in the daytime and cool air can accumulate at night, creating optimal conditions for the development of the aromatic characteristics of white grapes.

There is therefore relatively little variation in terms of surroundings and climate within the production area of DOC ‘Custoza’ white wines.

Historical and human factors

The first record of vines being domesticated in what is now the production area of ‘Custoza’ DOC is the discovery of grape pips (Vitis sylvestris) dating back to the times of stilt-house settlements in the Pacengo and Peschiera area. There is evidence of vine cultivation as early as Roman times (among the archaeological finds in the area are objects indicating that wine was used in religious rites and items used for preserving and transporting wine), and there is abundant documentation on the cultivation of vines in the area — between Pastrengo and Sommacampagna in particular — from the 9th century onwards and throughout the Middle Ages.

By the second half of the 19th century, the local wine was beginning to be specifically known by the name ‘Custoza’, the name of a village in Sommacampagna municipality famous for two battles fought during the Italian wars of unification. The Sona-Custoza area was also listed as one of the best wine-growing areas of the western part of the province of Verona in a study conducted by the Conegliano Viticulture and Wine Experimentation Centre in 1939.

‘Bianco di Custoza’ DOC was officially created by a Presidential Decree issued on 8 February 1971, and was among the first white wines to gain recognition as a designation of origin in Italy. The shortened name ‘Custoza’ was approved in 2005. The ‘Custoza’ Protection Association was set up in 1972.

Human factors

The vine cultivation system most commonly used in the DOC ‘Custoza’ production area was, for a long time throughout its history, the trellis system. In ancient times grapes were not grown in dedicated vineyards but alongside other crops, which were, moreover, limited by the hilly terrain.

In the 1980s, radical changes began to take place in the ‘Custoza’ production area, affecting both the vine-growing method and agronomy practices, allowing winemakers to best exploit the specific features of the native vine varieties, Garganega, Trebbianello (a local biotype of Tocai friulano) and Bianca Fernanda (a local clone of Cortese). Thanks to progressive improvements in technology and experience gained over time, wine-growers are now able to identify and apply the most suitable processes for growing high-quality grapes and to pinpoint the ideal moment for harvesting them, bringing out the specific qualities conferred on the grapes by the interaction between variety, hill soils and microclimate.

It is, however, when the grapes are made into wine are made that the local producers' know-how really comes into play. Through it, the ‘Custoza’ grape blend brings out the delicate, floral and fruity bouquet of Garganega, the characteristic colour of Trebbianello and the slightly aromatic hints of Bianca Fernanda, as well as the distinguishing features of the other white grapes grown in the area. All of these factors combined mean that ‘Custoza’ is characterised by its strong local connotations and easily recognised by its freshness and drinkability.

‘Bianco di Custoza’/‘Custoza’

Specific characteristics of the product

The essential characteristics of ‘Custoza’ wines are — and always have been — their freshness, slightly aromatic nature, and the fact that they are drinkable wines that are easily paired. However, when particular specific selections are made at vineyards, these wines are also well-suited to ageing.

Alongside Garganega, Trebbianello and Bianca Fernanda, ‘Custoza’ wines are made with other varieties grown in the area, giving them their distinctive, highly aromatic complexity that sets them apart from wines made with the individual varieties on their own. The sensory profile that emerges features fruity and floral notes, sometimes accompanied by hints of herbs and spices. In short, the blending of the basic varieties gives ‘Custoza’ its identity, while the use of additional varieties enriches this with distinctive bouquets.

One very rare, although traditional, product is the ‘Custoza’passito (raisin wine), golden in colour and with a pleasant or sweet flavour, inspired by the wines that were traditionally served to follow festive meals.

(c)   Causal link between environment and product

The fact that there is very little variation in climate conditions throughout the ‘Custoza’ DOC production area (which is, of course, not particularly large) means that the different types of grapes grown in the area mature evenly. This factor contributes significantly to shaping the identity of these white wines.

Equally important is the effect of the high degree of soil diversity, the result of irregular deposits left in the area by various glaciation processes. This aspect materialises in the fresh, young, spirited nature of ‘Custoza’.

In particular, due to their composition, moraine soils help to ensure regular germination of all the vines. The interaction between the soils and the area's climate helps the grapes and shoots to develop and ripen properly.

Hot, but not suffocating, summers are conducive to a concentration of sugars, and good variations between day and night temperatures help the fruity and floral aromatic substances found in the ‘Custoza’ DOC wines to develop.

9.   Essential further conditions (packaging, labelling, other requirements)

NONE

Link to the product specification

https://www.politicheagricole.it/flex/cm/pages/ServeBLOB.php/L/IT/IDPagina/14117


(1)  OJ L 9, 11.1.2019, p. 2.