Sunday, January 29, 2023

[Whereabouts = Abruzzo] [Topic = Montepulciano] [Endeavor = A Meditation]

here is it in Italy that really grabs you by the heart and flings you around, as if you were dancing and loving and young forever and all was well with the world, as it always has been?

A tall order, without doubt. And a difficult one, for those who have traversed the length and width of Italy. After all, there is so much to  love in almost anywhere in Italy. Just plop oneself down and spin around and where you stop, you head forward in search of magic and miracles.

But if you had to pinpoint one spot, one place, one grape, one region, what would you choose?

One to consider, and a long shot at that, for most people, might be Abruzzo.

Sunday, January 22, 2023

The Master Class, the Masterpiece & the Porn Cycle – A Consideration

Well, the default world is back upon us. Everything is opening back up. And the merrymakers are back at it. That’s right folks, we’re going back, not just in time, but in deeds.

Three years ago, we looked out over the precipice with little to go on. We were in uncharted waters. Incertitude abounded. Fear, as well. But we were moving forward, creeping slowly at that, but one foot in front of the other. Towards an indeterminate future.

We left many behind. They didn’t make it. Family. Friends. Followers. Cohorts. The world changed beyond question. Many of us questioned where we were going.

Some of us traveled to new lands. Some of us stayed put. Some of us froze. Some of us changed.

Now, three years later, what is this world? For some of us, the comfort of returning to things the way they were has been an irresistible temptation. So, here we go again. Wine dinners. Scores. Reviews. Junkets. Competitions. The inevitable master class. Back at it, again.

Sunday, January 15, 2023

Italian Mountain Wines, Friendship and a Good Night’s Sleep

Why most of you came here was to find out about Italian wine. And, over the years, I’ve written a lot about that. I’m not stopping, wine is just a part of everyday life these days. But good wine, and the occasional great wine, make all the difference in the world.

For that, I’ve been focusing on Italian wine made in mountain climes, from Liguria to Piedmont, to Alto Adige, to Valtellina, to Valle d’Aoste, to Etna, and anywhere and everywhere wine making becomes just a little more challenging to make. Heroic? Sure, why not?

One need to just go there, try and drive there, hike there, and see how challenging it is. I’ve more than once lost my breath, my balance and my equilibrium once I got on top of a mountain (or even a tall hill) and looked across the horizon. Never down. Yeah, right. Unfortunately, I did look down, and it was hard going to get me off that mountain top. But ultimately, I descended. After all the cellar usually is somewhere lower, and one must complete their research, n'est-ce pas?

Sunday, January 08, 2023

MMXXIII – An Italian quandary – delving into Italy’s past (and present) and looking into the possibility that Italian cultural appropriation, in food and wine, has occurred - and what to think (or do) about it.


cul·tur·al ap·pro·pri·a·tion

   the unacknowledged or inappropriate adoption of the customs, practices, ideas, etc. of one people or society by members of another and typically more dominant people or society.

    "His dreadlocks were widely criticized as another example of cultural appropriation"

Open an Italian cookbook or history of Italian cooking, and in the early chapters one might find a recounting of ingredients brought back to Italy from the likes of Marco Polo and Columbus.

Polo introduced Italy to new spices and exotic foods. Columbus and his cohorts brought back tomatoes, potatoes and cocoa from the Americas. Ice cream, so ubiquitous all over Italy as gelato, is said to have been introduced into Italy by the Saracens, who got it from the Hindus, who got it from the Chinese.

Were these inappropriately adopted by Italy? And if so, what is one to make of that?

Regarding wine, we hear talk of French varietals like Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. In the Maremma, these varieties are thriving. Are Cabernet and Merlot the dreadlocks of Tuscany?

Real Time Analytics