With its central location, Umbria is one of the smallest regions of Italy and is considered to be home to some of the country's earliest inhabitants. Similar in climate to Tuscany, Umbria has cold, rainy winters and dry, sunny summers.
Due to Umbria's hilly terrain, many vineyard plantings are done along terraces which are cut into the hillsides, hence the name 'colli' (translated into 'hill') seen in many of the region's DOC names. Umbria's wine production is limited, producing less than a third less than that of neighbouring Tuscany. Overall, it is the fourth smallest in Italy in terms of wine production.
What Umbria lacks in quantity, however, it makes up for in quality. Known primarily for its white wines, the Oriveto DOC is one of the best appreciated wines and accounts for 80% of overall wine production. Mostly found in the dry variety, in the town of Oriveto it can be found in the Abboccato (semi-sweet) variety.
While the region is most noted for its white wines, both of Umbria's DOCGs are for red wines. There are a total of 11 DOCs as well, and while there isn't a large percentage of a wine produced at DOC level, this is steadily on the rise.
Investments in practice have allowed for many high-quality new wines such as Cabernet Sauvignons, Merlots, and Chardonnays to become available. Due to their affordable prices compared to similar wines in Tuscany, they have attracted considerable interest locally and internationally.