A photo of The Best Wine & Food Tasting Tours in Emilia-Romagna

Emilia Romagna
wine tasting tours and winery visits

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Why Visit Emilia Romagna?

Emilia-Romagna is an extensive wine-producing region which stretches across the north of Italy almost from San Marino on the eastern coast to the southern border of Lombardy in the west. This is a land of beautiful Italian countryside and rich, quintessentially Italian heritage - the birthplace of some iconic Italian foods such as prosciutto di Parma ham, parmigiano reggiano (Parmesan cheese) and balsamic vinegar, the home of iconic brands such as Maserati, Lamborghini and Ferrari, and is also the birthplace of operatic legend Luciano Pavarotti, who grew up in the town of Modena. Phew! As if that wasn't enough, this is also a plentiful, welcoming region where the wine flows, the food is fantastic and the cheery towns and cities provide a vibrant backdrop for your visit. 

Bologna, the capital of the region, proudly boasts some of the best Italian cuisine in all of Italy, making it an ideal destination for foodies. The salami and cured meats are to die for, and as elsewhere in Italy pair perfectly with the local red wines. The city is also home to Europe's oldest university, some incredible church buildings, Renaissance art and even has a leaning tower to rival the famous tower at Pisa! One of the best things about Bologna is the fact that, although it is often overlooked by tourists in favour of more famous destinations such as Rome and Florence, this makes it a much more peaceful and authentic experience for those who do find their way to this hidden treasure. Instead of hordes of tourists, the pretty streets are calm and lovely, the locals are welcoming, and dull tourist trap restaurants are few and far between.

Also well worth visiting are the towns of Modena and Parma. Modena, aside from being the childhood home of one of the world's greatest opera singers, is also something of a gastronomic Mecca. Here you will find Osteria Francescana, chef Massimo Bottura's iconic 3 Michelin Star restaurant which was the first Italian restaurant in history to be awarded 'Best Restaurant in the World' in 2018. It's far from cheap, of course, but in terms of once-in-a-lifetime food experiences, it doesn't get better than this - just make sure you reserve your spot well in advance! However, it's hard to go wrong eating anywhere in the town and visitors can rest assured that wherever they choose to eat, the local produce and warm welcome will be second to none. There are also museums dedicated to Ferrari and Maserati in Modena, as well as an interesting Pavarotti exhibit. In Parma, slightly further west, enjoy the peace and tranquillity of this quietly prosperous city and discover the secrets of its most famous exports - Parma ham and Parmesan cheese! 

Outside the major towns and cities, this is a great part of Italy to hire a car and drift from place to place - the flat lowlands of the Po valley provide some lovely scenery, and the vineyards of Lambrusco around Modena are a great place to discover this lesser-known sparkling wine. Car fanatics are spoilt for choice with a total 6 different museums dedicated to various supercar brands on offer, the countryside is dotted with impressive palazzo buildings, and everywhere in Emilia-Romagna there is a feeling of warmth, wealth and luxury which makes any visit a truly special experience. 

Plan Your Visit

Best Known Grapes

Italy is well-known for the diversity of its grape varieties, and Emilia-Romagna is no exception. Look out for the variations of Lambrusco which create the region's well-known sparkling wines; whites feature Trebbiano, Malvasia and Ortrugo, whilst reds feature Sangiovese, Barbera and even some Pinot Noir. Historically, the reputation of the region's wines has not been particularly good, but this image is fast changing and some excellent wines are now to be found all around the region. 
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Best time to visit

This part of Italy is pleasant and temperate at any time of year, particularly between March and October. However, it can be wise to avoid the sometimes extreme heat in the peak months of July and August - many businesses in the cities can also tend to close around this time for their own holidays. September can be particularly lovely, with the gentle summer heat remaining and some of the best seasonal produce on show.
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How long to stay

Spend at least 5 days travelling through Emilia-Romagna to allow enough time to truly appreciate the various lovely cities and attractions at an unhurried pace. However, if you are tight for time, a long weekend break to Bologna is a great option - spend a day or two enjoy the city with perhaps a short hop to neighbouring Modena or the lovely countryside.
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How to get there

Bologna Airport is the main point of entry into the region, with good connections across Europe - the flight time from London is around 2 hours 30 minutes. It's also easy to take high-speed trains to and from various other major destinations in Italy, including Rome, Florence, Venice and Milan.
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