The new Italian DOCGs, Derrida, and the moral bankruptcy of the Italian appellation system

Do Bianchi

I will speak, therefore, of a letter.

Of the first [seventh] letter, if the alphabet, and most of the speculations which have ventured into it, are to be believed.

Jacques Derrida, “Différance” (1968)

If the alphabet is to be believed, then I imagine we must seriously consider the three new DOCGs announced by the Italian government last week: Frascati Superiore, Cannellino di Frascati, and Montecucco Sangiovese. (See my paraphrase of the agricultural minister’s press release at VinoWire and see Alfonso’s wonderfully parodic treatment here.)

Of these — in an era when the Italian DOC/G system has been rendered essentially obsolete, save for its campanilian value, by the EU CMO reforms and adoption of the overarching PDO and PGI system — the most intriguing and least absurdist is the Montecucco Sangiovese.

Montecucco (in the Tuscan province of Grosseto) has grown significantly in the last 5 years, both in terms…

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