Back in 2009, the Prosecco DOCG consortium decided to change the official name of the Prosecco grape, the main variety that is used to make the wines.
For nearly as long as anyone could remember, the grape was called Prosecco. And Prosecco remains a correct synonym for the variety.
But as the consortium and many trade observers had rightly noted, the name Prosecco also created a lot of confusion in the marketplace.
Not only was Prosecco the name of the grape and the wine. But it is also the name of a small town in the province of Trieste, Italy, not far from Prosecco’s spiritual homeland in the Valdobbiadene-Conegliano-Asolo area. As a result, Prosecco lovers and even Italian wine connoisseurs often confused the grape, the wine, and the place.
By changing the grape name to the ancient name Glera, this confusion was easily resolved. It also prompted renewed interest in the wines because many wine lovers, and especially American wine lovers, found it extremely helpful to keep the grape name and wine name separate and different.
As insignificant as it sounds, it made a huge difference to be able to say “Prosecco made from the Glera grape” as opposed to “Prosecco made from the Prosecco grape.” In the case of the latter, it often seemed like it was a typo!