From a political economy perspective, development regions shape many rural areas and their communities across Europe. The paper aims contrasting the advantage brought by the wine regions to the economic development regions of Romania. To investigate the linkages between the performance of winegrowing family businesses and their contribution to regional development, we created an index of regional competitiveness across Romania. This model consists of a competitive framework based on three input factors: (1) business density (the number of firms operating in the wine industry, compared to the national demographics); (2) number of knowledgebased businesses (by inquiring winemaking businesses (family and corporate businesses) about the introduction of new products or processes to the market or the achievement of recognized quality of wines); (3) economic participation (turnover, profitability, sales of new products, employment trends), conceptualized as contributing to the output-productivity of a region. The survey measures the vintners’ performance impact on the economic progress/decline, business success being correlated with the competitiveness of areas relative to the performance of the host region (the geographical spread condition was accomplished). The analysis of answers collected from the winemakers uses the standard SPSS software. Addressing Romanian development areas by comparison aims to generate potential catalysts for economic recovery. As might be expected, the firm’s capacity to introduce new products and its spatial location in a ″high performing area″ are not a case in point. The fact that low-performing areas, in low-performing regions have innovative winemaking business constitutes a reason to support this sector. In the context of this first-release analysis, the intention is to provoke further exploration of the impact of regional status of Romanian wine regions, meant to make an example of successful rural restructuring and regional development, to apply to other industries as well.