Sunday, December 12, 2010

Good Enough For Now

I’m so very sorry. I seem to have fallen off the wine trail, once again. I don’t know what to tell you. I know you want to know more about where to visit in Tuscany, or which are the best 2007 Barolos on the market. But I’m not able to fulfill those needs. I have been distracted. By life. By work. By the here and now. And here we are entering the mainstream of the holidays, so most likely there will be more of this from these pages.

In five years, the wine trail has gone through Italy, often. But life isn’t all about wine. Or Italy. I love the place and the wines, don’t get me wrong. I just have a larger world that I have been handed. And not a lot of time. So there you have it. Welcome aboard or bon voyage.


All last week was spent in Louisiana. New Orleans. 1st tier dining city. Wines are predominantly European. French first. Then Italian, Spanish, German, and so on. Bordeaux is big. Burgundy is bigger. Champagne is important. So are Rhones, Alsatians, Languedoc. It’s part of the fabric of a city for whom the term “food culture” applies. If you have never been to Louisiana, I recommend getting there as soon as possible. Start with New Orleans, maybe work your way west to Baton Rouge and Lafayette and take your time. Food culture. Music culture. Culture culture.

It is the closest thing to France, or Italy that is near to where I live. I love it, absolutely am crazy about the place. I feel like I am in France or Italy.

A week ago, in Austin, we ate and drank like we were in Sicily. Or Louisiana. One can find those experiences at home as well. Anywhere. But there is that old “spirit of place” element. The terroir of the Vieux CarrĂ©. And just as one can be bewitched by Bologna, so one can be as well by Baton Rouge or Big Bend. I think that is one of the beautiful things I have learned from travel and from Italy. Those things “particulare” that make up the interesting piece of a place can be found anywhere the open heart and eyes will peer into. Italy is everywhere.

I know it is in Louisiana, for my bones feel it. I dream about places in the city, I walk around it in dreams, wandering. Genetic memories from a great-great grandfather who lived there 150 years ago? Perhaps.

Before the end of the year, this blog will post some of the highlights of the year. Images, wines and travels. It’s been a great year and 2011 is looking like it will be filled with adventure. I have packed my bags already, for I will be on the road much of the year, New York, San Francisco, Napa, New Orleans, Little Rock, Indianapolis, Verona, Friuli, Abruzzo, Sicily, Germany, France, St. Louis, Columbus, Oxford, and all points in between.

The sun is beginnin' to shine on me
But it's not like the sun that used to be
The party's over and there's less and less to say
I got new eyes, everything looks far away.


Well, my heart's in the highlands at the break of day
Over the hills and far away
There's a way to get there and I'll figure it out somehow
Well, I'm already there in my mind, and that's good enough for now.
-Bob Dylan



8 comments:

CJ and PK said...

As one door closes, another opens - we have only just embarked upon the wine trail ourselves, although we seem to be meandering and getting lost already...

AmzgGraceCircus said...

Wherever you go, we will follow...journey into or out of your mind...

Louisville Juice said...

I don't think you need to apologize for having a life. I like what you do, even when you do it in Louisiana. (You forgot Mulate's in Breaux Bridge, which is for my money the highest achievement of cajun culture, particularly when the band is playing on a Saturday night.) Repost to your heart's content; we love the pictures and words.

And enjoy your holidays.

dobianchi.com said...

Alfonso, I really like the new look of On the Wine Trail in Italy but is that really Castello di Rampolla? I mean, did you take that photo when you and Alder went to the Playboy Mansion?

Seriously, thanks for the shouts out and I'm dying to get to Lusiana (sic) with you!

Alfonso Cevola said...

thanks all y'all

Tracie P. said...

where's my comment? :( i get no approval!!

Alfonso Cevola said...

Hey Tra-
you commented on the last post. And of course, I approve of everything you do ;)

Dave B said...

Ace:
Great look at New Orleans (or is it N'awlins?) a terrific food and wine city from a wine and food outlook.
You site looks terrific, but it's your writing that keeps me coming back.
Ci vediamo il messe prossimo a New York
Dave...

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