Appellation is a legally protected geographic name under which a winery is authorized to identify and market its wine. The appellation typically appears on the front label of a wine bottle. In order to use the name in its marketing materials, a winery may have to meet the following requirements:
- Its grapes are grown within a specific geographic region
- Only certain grape varieties can be used
- The wine has a minimum alcoholic content
- The vineyard does not exceed a specified grape yield per acre
Some appellations cover relatively broad regions, while others are very tightly defined, sometimes encompassing an area in which there is only one operating winery.