Fortana, red Italian native grape variety. Until the twentieth century, Fortana was known as Uva d’Oro (“golden grape”) or as Fruttana (“plenty of fruit” or “very fruity”); both these names refer to Fortana’s copious yields.

Where grown | Emilia Romagna It grows mainly in the coastal countryside that extends from the mouth of the Po River at Goro to the source of the Reno River, around Ravenna, and in the provinces of Parma and Reggio Emilia. The wine is most interesting when the grapes are grown near Ferrara, in the Bosco Eliceo; which is the one grand cru for the variety and the only DOC that allows for up to 100% Fortana (with a minimum 85 percent).

Viticulture | Fortana produces big bunches and berries. It is described as rustic, behaving like wild grapevines, combining vigour with good disease resistance. This makes its a generous and reliable yielder.

Wine style | Bright red-cherry and raspberry aromas and flavors, complicated by notes of cocoa, black pepper, quinine, and licorice. The wine can be both dry or sweet: the dry sparkling version is the most typical.

Bibliography

See Ian D’Agata, Native Wine Grapes of Italy (University of California Press, 2014.

Italian Wine Unplugged (Positive Press, 2017), p.177