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Vergine

Qualitatively best variant of the Marsala; see there.

DOC area for liqueur wine in the Italian region of Sicily. It is one of the most famous dessert wines in the world and is named after the port of the same name (Arabic Marsah-el-Allah = port or gate of God) in the province of Trapani. The zone with more than 5,000 hectares of vineyards covers the entire province of Trapani, with the exception of the island of Pantelleria, which is located off the coast of Sicily and belongs to it, and the municipalities of Alcamo and Favignana. In 1770, the English merchant and wine expert John Woodhouse came to Marsala and began exporting Sicilian wines to England, because the demand for port and sherry there exceeded supply. 1773 is considered the year of "invention", when Woodhouse added eight litres of spirit to each of the four hundred litre barrels destined for England. He had already been involved in the production of port wine in Portugal. In 1796 he opened the first Marsala House in Marsala, consisting of a warehouse and cellar.

The success of the wine was initiated, so to speak, by the English Admiral Horatio Nelson (1758-1805), who in 1800 ordered an annual delivery of 500 barrels for the fleet. In 1812 the Englishman Benjamin Ingham founded a second company in Marsala and exported the wine to North America and Australia. The largest Marsalahaus Florio still in existence today was opened in 1832 by Vincenzo Florio. All three companies were finally taken over by the Wormwood House...

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