“Verdicchio? Is that a vegetable?” My writing partner Sue Hills was asked this question twice in twenty four hours. While Verdicchio may sound like some sort of green vegetable, it’s actually a green fruit — a grape to be exact, and not surprisingly, a greenish grape. To make it even more complicated, Verdicchio is known by many other names, and combined, it’s one of the most planted grapes in the world — and likely one that you don’t know! Continue reading
Prosecco is popular, no doubt about it, and especially this year when it seems there’s little to sparkle about.
But there’s so much more to Italian Sparkling wine than Prosecco! Continue reading
“Sassicaia, Sassicaia, all they want is Sassicaia!” wailed the young sommelier from China during a tasting lab of Sangiovese and other Italian indigenous grapes during the VinItaly Wine Ambassador Course in Los Angeles in February 2019.
“How can I get them to try something else?” she asked plaintively. The group of wine professionals gathered weighed in, but none of the suggestions seemed to click. Continue reading
Chiaretto? What’s that? Sue and I figured we’d just pass up this month’s Italian Food Wine Travel Chiaretto prompt — it’s summer, we’re busy, we’re traveling, we’ve got big projects going at home, and what is Chiaretto anyway?
But we got an offer we couldn’t refuse: samples! So we looked at our calendars, and committed to it — still with NO IDEA what we were in for but figuring it was something red.
That’s because even though Sue’s family is from Italy, we don’t speak a whole lot of Italian. Continue reading
When we heard that the Italian Wine Food and Travel group was going to focus on Italy’s coastline, Sue and I immediately thought of Sicily! Not only is this an island region of Italy with 900 miles of coastline, it’s home to two of our favorite, affordable finds of 2016, Nero D’Avola, a red wine, and Grillo, white wine.
900 miles is a lot of coastline in a country with a lot of coastline!
Fall is harvest, and that means bountiful, hearty foods and flavors. As the temperatures drop, people are drawn to warm flavors that make you feel good inside. Hearty Italian wines pair wonderfully well with these hearty foods and flavors.
But you don’t need to do a full on complicated meal (like we did here) to take advantage of the plentiful fall foods like squash and tomatoes.
For this month’s “fall” theme for the Italian Food Wine Travel prompt, we decided to take an easy uncomplicated route because our schedule was just too hectic to do anything more! On a recent weeknight, Sue dropped by Trader Joe’s for raviolis and she made a sauce (recipe below) which we paired three wines from August’s #WineStudio that I was too sick to taste (plus a Prosecco!)
- Castello di Magione 2013 Monterone Grechetto Colli del Trasimeno DOC
- Castello di Magione 2014 Sangiovese Umbria IGT
- Castello di Magione 2008 Morcinaia Colli del Trasimeno DOC
But these weren’t just any Italian wines. As this is a post for #ItalianWFT, I wanted Italian wines that had a nice travel story. And these do–they come from a CASTLE! And they have a great story that includes the Order of Malta which is active in 120 countries and is working hard on various relief projects including recovering from the devastating August 2016 earthquake.