Discovering Chiaretto: Italian Dry Rosés Off The Beaten Path

If you’re looking to veer off the beaten path, head to Northern Italy to sample delicious Italian Dry Rosé. Produced on the beautiful shores of Lake Garda, Chiaretto (key-ar-et-toh) is highly appreciated for its crisp and dry personality.

Chiaretto began in the 19th century when Pompeo Molmenti (a lawyer and writer) produced it from his Lake Garda vineyard in 1896. Although the legend lives, ancient evidence mentions “Chiaretto” printed in a Verona document, dated 1806.

In 1968, Bardolino Chiaretto was one of the first appellations in Italy to be awarded the DOC (Denominazione di Origine Controllata) in recognition of the wine’s historic tradition and quality. Since 2014, Chiaretto winemakers initiated a “Rosé Revolution,” giving the wine a very pale pink color and more aromatic and floral notes.

Today, Chiaretto’s success in the Italian rosé sector is evident, producing 8.5 million bottles per year, from 6670 acres and 100 producers. It’s mainly sold in Italy and Germany, with an important increase in the U.S., Canadian and Scandinavian markets.

Made primarily from the Corvina, and Rondinella indigenous grapes, the Rosé is fresh and lively with citrus fruits that dance in the glass.  Its fragrances range from flowers to herbaceous tones, from citrus fruits to apricots and wild berries, all accompanied by hints of spice, cinnamon, cloves, and vanilla. On the palate, Chiaretto offers youthful freshness.

They are delicious wines, and you’ll need to try one. They are sometimes hard to find on the U.S. shelves, so ask your wine retailer for help.

Even better, if you’re planning a visit to Northern Italy, stop by a few wineries. Here are a few recommendations as well as a few not to be missed places to visit. Until next time, happy drinking!


Le Morette, Viale Indipendenza 9/D, San Benedetto di Lugana 37019 Peschiera del Garda, Italy
Valetti winery, 37010 Calmasino di Bardolino, Verona, Italy
Bettilli Cristiana, Cantina Valetti, Via Pragrande 8, Calmasino 37010 Bardolino, Italy
Le Fraghe winery Le Fraghe, Via Colombare 3 – 37010 Cavaion Veronese, Italy
Zeni 1870, Via Costabella 9 – 37011 Bardolino, Italy
Bigagnoli, Via Veronello 1 – 37010 Calmasino di Bardolino, Italy
Bergamini, Ca’ Nova, 3 37017 Cola’ di Lazise – Verona, Italy
Casaretti, CASARETTI – 2/A, 37011 Calmasino Verona, Italy
Gentili, Via S. Antonio, 271, 37013 Pesina di Caprino Veronese, Italy
Il Pignetto, Pignetto, 108 – Bussolengo, Verona, Italy
Le Ginestre, I-37017 Lazise sul Garda, Verona, Italy
Poggio delle Grazie,  37014 Castelnuovo Del Garda, Verona, Italy
Villa Calicantus, Via Concordia, 9, 37011, Calmasino di Bardolino, Verona, Italy
Costaripa, Via della Costa n.1/A – 25080 Moniga del Garda, Brescia, Italy
Pasini San Giovanni, Via Videlle, 2 – 25080 Raffa di Puegnago, Brescia, Italy
Pratello, Di Bertola V. S.S., Via Pratello, 26, 25080 Padenghe Sul Garda Brescia, Italy
Valetti winery, 37010 Calmasino di Bardolino, Verona, Italy
Bettilli Cristiana – Sorsei winery, Via Ca’ Vignega 20 – 37010 Pescantina, Verona, Italy

Places to Visit

Don’t miss the Lemon Garden in Torri del Benaco. The origin of the Garda lemon garden dates back to the XIII century, when the cultivation of citrus fruits was introduced on Lake Garda.

For dinner, head for an epic tortellini experience at Ristorante Alla Borsa in Verona. More than likely, the tortellini will be the best you’ve ever had. Yes, they are that good!

Last but not least, head to the Bardolino Wine Museum inside Zeni Winery in Bardolino. The museum takes you on a journey around the world of wine while learning about its history. It’s divided into thematic areas, each dedicated to a different stage of the wine production process, from growing the vine to harvest, and bottling.

For more information about Italy’s dry Rosé, Chiaretto, visit

#discoverchiaretto #chiarettopink


About the Author:

Editor and co-founder of, Pamela is a sommelier and former restaurant manager and wine buyer with Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET), Court of Master Sommeliers & Center for Wine Origins certification. She has contributed to or been quoted by various publications, including the Los Angeles Times, Sommelier Journal, Vegetarian Times, VIV Magazine, UC-Berkeley Astrobiology News, The Washington Post, the Associated Press, NPR and USA Today. True to her roots, she seeks varietal and appellation integrity and is always passionate about finding the next great bottle of wine.


  1. Sophie January 14, 2018 at 4:18 PM - Reply

    Ga! You kill me with your awesome graphics! It’s like I’m in the region…. Now I have another place to put on my bucket list.

  2. Robin Bell Renken January 15, 2018 at 11:24 AM - Reply

    Wow! The photography is really stunning! I will be checking with my local wine shop to see if they can bring some Chiaretto in! This is not a region I was familiar with or a wine I have tasted. Now it is a must!

  3. enobytes January 16, 2018 at 4:31 PM - Reply

    Thanks for the kudos Robin and Sophie! I’m so happy that I could offer insight into an unknown region…its definitely worth a visit, and to sample some wine!

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