Especially in Italy. Spain and Portugal common name or synonym and homonym for many different grape varieties. They are available with the berry colors white, light green, gray, rosé, red, blue and black and also with different flavors, for example with and without nutmeg, In summary, the grape varieties with "Malvasia" in the name have a genetically diverse background and show an equally heterogeneous morphology (external appearance). That is, there are no special Malvasia-specific features. The name Malvasia names a type of wine and not a commonly falsely named grape variety family (the same phenomenon applies by the way also for the four name groups Lambrusco. muscatel. Trebbiano and Vernaccia ). The Malvasia varieties are often genetically different vines.
The name Malvasia is probably an indication of the port Monemvasia in the southeastern Peloponnese, which in the Middle Ages a Umschlagplatz for Dessert wines was from the Mediterranean. An important production site was Crete, The traders from the former naval power Venice imported documentary evidence already in 1278 "Vinum de Malvasias". These were so important at the time that the Venetian wine shops were even called "Malvasie". These wines were made from different Greek grape varieties, which were often blended together. Which were that, is unknown, but among the candidates count Aïdani Aspro. Aïdani Mavro. Assyrtiko. Athiri Aspro. Athiri Mavro. Kydonitsa. Liatiko. Monemvasia. Thrapsathiri and vilana,
The name Malvasia finally became synonymous with excellent wines and also found its way into world literature. Shakespeare Falstaff pays tribute to a Malvasia and Thomas Mann gets a Bouteille Malvasier from the cellar in "Buddenbrooks". Which varieties the authors had meant was probably not even clear to these two. The name Malvasia was modified or verballhornt in different languages. In English was Malmsey from it and also designates a wine type of the Madeira, In France will malvoisie, in Croatia Malvazija and in the German speaking area malmsey used. There are also the spellings Malvagia, Malvasie, Malvasijie, Malvasika and Malvasiya. In many sources and publications is often only briefly "Malvasia" specified, which makes the identification often difficult.
There are at least 25 different varieties with "Malvasia" in the main name, as well as countless in synonyms. In the individual countries and regions, these varieties are called different. That it often comes to confusion here is not surprising. The 100 most important names with Malvasia in the name:
Further lists of grape variety names or synonyms can be found below malmsey (usual in German-speaking countries) and malvoisie (common in France).
In Italy, there are also a number of DOC wines with Malvasia in the name, but not exclusively Malvasia varieties are used. These are:
Grape varieties: MIPAAF - National Vine Certification Service