There are changes in the air: A little morning fog, a bounce in the breeze and the path of the sun in the morning. Spring is near. While my mission is Italy, my mind veers towards California. No it isn’t about the wines, it’s something else. Maybe it’s the way the place welcomes in a new cycle of the season; maybe it’s my Sunday nostalgia creeping back in. I don’t know.
Over the past week we’ve had a lot of wonderful Italian wine, from Franciacortas to surprisingly fresh Sangiovese-Cabernet-Merlot blends from Tuscany. I know, I said Merlot. Live with it. Last night a delicate Grillo and tonight a fresh Gaglioppo, so while the flesh is being drawn across the sky to the West, we’re anchored in the lake of Italian wine.
I am concerned that everything is careening out of control. The war, the economy, consumerism, denial. And still we pass one another on the street gunning our engines like it’s 1961 and gas is 23 cents a gallon, not $4.00 and climbing. Were driving ourselves over the cliff and taking everyone with us.
What started out as a highway to the West became a mania for us under this affliction of the internal combustion engine.
Multiply that by all the boats and planes and trains, moving products all around the world so that we can have prosciutto from Parma and capers from Pantelleria and Zweigelt from Bressanone, it all gets a little overwhelming.
Will Italian wines someday be only a distant memory? Like the ones I have of a California that exists no longer?