Many travel to Tuscany wine country from Rome, but the countryside surrounding Rome boasts some of the best wines in Italy, Frascati being the most celebrated.
It is quite easy to escape Rome and go on a wine tasting and history tour of Lazio even for a few hours. Villas, villages, olive groves and rustic Italian wineries of Castelli Romani are only about half an hour away from Rome.
Castelli Romani, literally translated as Roman Castles, is an area to the southeast of Rome, just a little further away than the Ciampino airport.
Famous for the Roman monuments, historic palaces dating back to the 17th century, and churches, Catelli Romani also refers to a collection of nine small wine-producing towns scattered over the Alban Hills.
The landscapes of Castelli Romani were created by volcanic activity. Lake Nemi and Lake Albano are in fact the craters of the old volcanos and are among the most attractive natural features of the Lazio region. The lakes and the altitude cool the vineyards providing perfect conditions for white grapes..
The region is home to an abundance of indigenous grapes. Malvasia and Trebbiano based white wines are made in a fresh unoaked style. They are medium in body with medium to high acidity and flavours of citrus and orange blossom.
There is also significant production of red wines and sparkling wines, however, they are not as high-profile.
Frascati is the most well-known of the Castelli Romani towns. Only 13 miles (21 km) from Rome, this town is the most visited by tourists and a popular destination for Romans.
Rome’s trademark wine, Frascati, has been produced here for nearly two thousand years and was known to Romans as the “golden wine” due to its color and value.
Other notable towns are:
Frascati is easily reachable by public transport.
COTRAL buses run frequently from the Anagnina metro station (remember to buy your tickets in advance from the kiosk at Anagnina and to validate them when you get on the bus).
You may need to change buses to reach smaller towns.
There is also a local train service from Rome, which leaves from the Rome Termini Station.
If you are traveling independently, it is very much recommended to pre-book your tastings at wineries by contacting them by phone, by email, or by booking directly on their website.
When you arrive at the Frascati station, wineries are within about a few minutes’ drive from the town. Arrange a pick up by a winery or take a taxi
Some great wineries to visit near Frascati:
Other wineries are a bit further, near Colonna and Cori:
Most of the tours will take you to one or two of the villages and then to a wine tasting at a winery. Some include lunch or snacks and olive oil. The Typical duration is between 3 and 7 hours.
Wine tours run from Rome or from Frascati train station.