Cagnina di Romagna is a little-known DOC of northern Italy's Emilia-Romagna region. The Cagnina grape from which the wines are made is thought to have originated from Friuli, and to have been introduced to Romagna in the 13th century during the construction of the city’s most important Byzantine monuments, when vast amounts of limestone were transported there from Carso and Dalmatia. It is also similar to the grapes used to make wine in Terrano d'Istria and the Carso.
The wine is predominantly made from Refosco grapes (locally known as Cagnina, or Terrano, meaning earth), and emerges as a deep purple-colored and full-bodied red with sweet fruit intensity, offering notes of strawberry and raspberry, backed by supple tannins. It is mainly produced for early consumption, although some have the capacity to age for a couple of years in favorable vintages. It is made in the Forli province and around Ravenna, near the Adriatic Sea, and the production zone extends over several municipalities: Brisighella, Casola Valsenio, Castelbolognese, Faenza and Riolo Terme in Ravenna; and Bertinoro, Castrocaro-Terra del Sole, Cesena, Forlimpopoli, Longiano, Montiano, Modigliana, Dovadola, Predappio, Mercato Seraceno, Meldola, Roncofreddo, Savignano su Rubicone, Gatteo and San Mauro Pascoli in Forli.
Under the DOC label, Cagnina di Romagna must contain a minimum 85% Refosco, with the possible 15% addition of other authorized grapes from the provinces of Ravenna and Forli.
(For more information on Romagna, its history and terroir, see Albana di Romagna)