Tuscan Quintet Part IV: Az. Agr. Tamburini

Beautiful at any time of year... Let me tell you a modern day fairy tale:Once upon a time, there was a dynamic dark-haired beauty. She made wine in Tuscany (I said this was a fairytale!) in a place called Il Castelluccio (which roughly translated means ‘the cute little castle’.) Emanuela Tamburini The beauty’s name is…

Tuscan Quintet: Part III Conte Guicciardini

Once upon a time... there was Castello di Poppiano Organization and method: that is what I found at Castello Poppiano, headquarters of the Conte Guicciardini winery. And history, vast history. And a touch of romanticism. A perfect blend that seems to have found its way into each carefully crafted bottle that bears the family crest.…

Tuscan Quintet Part II: La Sala

The long and winding road... The hills are alive, and they’re calling my name. The hills of Tuscany that is, and in particular the area around San Casciano Val di Pesa. Tuscany is full of rolling hills, rivers, and thermal baths, which is why it is such a great wine-growing region, in particular for reds…

Tuscan Quintet Part I: Travignoli

Screams Tuscany, doesn't it? My visit to the Travignoli winery took place on a day that was quintessential Tuscany: picture-perfect rolling green hills, white puffy clouds dotting an azure sky, neat rows of vines lending a sense of order to Nature, the occasional bright red geranium a splash of color. Yours truly on location It…

Masterpieces of Taste

'Tis the season... to be running from wine exhibit to anteprima to wine fair. Whether you are a producer or a taster, February kicks off the new vintages and it's hard to keep up! A new addition to the Calendar is Wine and Siena: Masterpieces of Taste (the subtitle is new too!), a 4-year old…

A Wine Adventure

So, have you ever dreamed of leaving the rat race behind, buying a vineyard and creating your own wine surrounded by gorgeous nature? Maybe creating a restaurant that features homegrown vegetables and local cheeses, keeping things rigorously organic? That is just what the Stefano Matturro and Gabriella Grassi did. Careers in Milan and Brescia in…

EUR at the Center of Italian Wine

The last weekend of October, Rome was a hotbed of activity for the maximum in Italian wine. On Saturday, October 26, the Italian Association of Sommeliers (AIS – Associazione Italiana Sommelier) presented its guide, Vitae, at the prestigious Nuvola Convention Center designed by famed Italian architect Massimiliano Fuksas. The Maximum in wine and architecture! And…

The Da Vinci Code for Wine

Milano Wine Week recently gave me the excuse to flit through Via Montenapoleone dressed to the nines and sip vintages while taking in the view of fancy pants fashion-conscious wine lovers. From the Duomo (left) to Via Montenapoleone, it's all a catwalk! A lot was going on during this Wine Week, from workshops to master…

A Brunello For All Seasons

One of Italy’s big B wines (Brunello, Barolo, Barbaresco, maybe even Bolgheri) that command universal respect, Brunello di Montalcino is perhaps the most exquisite expression of that versatile grape Sangiovese. Of course in this area of Tuscany, the grape itself is called Brunello, whereas in nearby Montepulciano, it goes by the name of Prugnolo Gentile!…

Much Ado About Something

Nestled into the hills of Chianti is a magical place called Vignamaggio. The name has nothing to do with the month of May (Maggio in Italian), but is rather a direct reference to its prominence as a vineyard (vigna) that is the best (maggiore). Lucky me that I got to visit it on a balmy…