The Ciliegia di Vignola PGI refers to the fresh cherry of the following cultivars: Early Bigi and Lory, Bigarreau Moreau and Burlat, Mora di Vignola (early ripening), Celeste, Giant Red - Primegiant, Carmen, Grace Star, Santina, Vera, Cristalina, Durone dell'Anella, Anellone, Giorgia, Durone Nero I, Samba, New Star, Black Star, Canada Giant, Van (mid-season), Durone Nero II, Durone della Marca, Lapins, Ferrovia, Sweet Heart, Regina, Summer Charm (Staccato) (late ripening).
For the cultivation of the cherry trees it is possible to use different growing methods (palmette, marchand, low vase, delayed vase or fusetto) and, depending on the typology, the density of plants per hectare can arrive at 2000. Fertilising, pruning and pest control are carried year-round, fully respecting the specified methods, periods and quantities in order to guarantee the qualitative requirements of the Geographical Indication. In order to prevent the fruit cracking, which is caused by rain, the plants can be covered with plastic sheets. Harvesting must be carried out by hand directly from the tree, with extreme care in conserving the stalk. Depending on the variety, the fruit are harvested at different times of the year: early ripening fruit are picked between May 1st and June 30th; mid-season between May 15th and July 15th and late ripening between May 25th and July 30th.
Appearance and Flavour
Ciliegia di Vignola PGI has a sweet and fruity flavour. The flesh is firm and crunchy, apart from those deriving from the Mora di Vignola cultivar. The skin varies from bright red to dark red in colour, excluding that of the Durone della Marca variety, which is shiny and yellow to bright red in colour. The minimum size is 20-23 mm depending on the variety, while the maximum can exceed 28 mm.
The production area of Ciliegia Vignola PGI is within the territory of several municipalities in the provinces of Modena and Bologna, situated at an altitude ranging from 30 to 950 metres a.s.l., in the Emilia-Romagna region.
The cultivation of cherry trees in the area of Vignola has ancient and deep-rooted origins. The exceptionality of the area’s pedoclimatic conditions offered this plant an ideal environment to flourish, and overtime it has become the most important agricultural business in the area, also thanks to the dedication of the farmers. Numerous historical documents confirm that the plant has been present since the mid-XIX century. Since then, the production and sale of this product has grown continuously.
Ciliegia di Vignola PGI can be kept in the fridge or in a cool, dry place. Thanks to its crunchy and sweet-tasting flesh, this fruit is ideal at the end of a meal. It can also be used in various sweet recipes, for example a Ciliegia di Vignola PGI Tart, and savoury dishes such as Saffron Tagliatelle with Ciliegia di Vignola PGI and Piquant Provolone Valpadana PDO. It is also perfect for making jams, sauces for wild game, liquors, and candied or liqueur fruits.
Ciliegia di Vignola PGI is a symbolic product of the production area with which it is identified. It is much larger in size in respect to other cherries and this has led to it being particularly sought after and prized.