Appellation: A named geographical area (may be as large as an entire region or as small as a vineyard) from which wine may be labeled and marketed as having come from. Regulations vary widely from country to country and appellation to appellation, but typically require that appellation-labeled wine be made entirely or mostly from grapes grown within the appellation's boundaries. Some appellations also regulate which grape varieties are permitted, how they are grown and harvested and how the wine is made. Prominent examples of appellation certifications around the world include France's Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée (AOC), Italy's Denominazione di Origine Controllata (DOC) and the United States' American Viticultural Area (AVA).
Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée: The French system of appellations, begun in the 1930s and considered the wine world's prototype. To carry an appellation in this system, a wine must follow rules describing the area the grapes are grown in, the varieties used, the ripeness, the alcoholic strength, the vineyard yields and the methods used in growing the grapes and making the wine.
Appellation d'Origine Protégée: This is the European Union's new designation, meant to replace the old Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée for recognition across the member states. It was officially adopted in January 2016.
A.O.C.: See Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée.
A.O.P.: See Appellation d'Origine Protégée.