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…

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…

Carpe diem, and visit Basilicata!

On a recent trip to taste Aglianico del Vulture, I discovered the birthplace of Horace, that fun-loving Latin poet who coined the phrase Carpe diem! Or Seize the day! My suggestion: take his advice and hurry up and visit the region of Basilicata. The lovely piazza dedicated to the monumental poet, Horace, in his birthplace,…

Man Does Not Live by Wine Alone…

Lucky for me, when I travel for wine, I also get to try an awful lot of good food. Puglia is one of those regions where authentic regional cuisine is flourishing. And as if that were not enough, going back to basics, using all natural ingredients or recipes the way grandma made them, is all…

Sensual Sicily, Chic Scicli

Sicily is a feast for the senses… Stimulation abounds, as you are surrounded by beauty, both natural and man-made. On a recent visit to Scicli – which is pronounced chic + ly – I got to know a little corner of the Mediterranean’s biggest island that had inexplicably avoided my probing eye. This end-of-summer moment…

A Tale of Tales… A Tale of Wine…

For years, I have wanted to visit that magnificent monument that is Puglia's Castel del Monte, and this summer I finally got there. Of course, no visit to Puglia is complete without a visit to a winery as well, and this day was no different. So what’s the connection you say? Did you know that…

Under the Volcano

So did you miss me? Italian Grapevine has been on the road, meeting vintners and tasting vintages, exploring the myriad geographical marvels of the Bel Paese peninsula. But we’re back, and will be reporting on all the jewels we’ve discovered, so keep your eyes peeled for our reportage… Flashback to Vinitaly 2018: I met the…

Roaring Roero

Roero may not be a name on everybody’s lips, but it is certainly the Italian area with the most roaring name. Try practicing the difficult Italian ‘R’ sound: Roero! Along with the Langhe and Monferrato, Roero is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site: Vineyard Landscapes of Piedmont. Roero takes its name from a noble…

Holy Cow, Holy Wine! Sagrantino

In Italian they say 'finire in bellezza' and that is exactly what we did, ending up the season of new release tastings in front of Benozzo Gozzoli's magnificent frescoes in Montefalco. Such beauty! It's taken me over a week to recover! Just adore St. Francis driving the demons out of Arezzo! Benozzo was busy, between…

It’s Good Friday: Do You Know Where Your Sepulchres Are?

On Holy Thursday and Good Friday in Italy, it is tradition to visit the Holy Sepulchre of Jesus, but not just one... many! Usually, the magic number is seven - but as any old Italian lady will tell you, as long as it's an odd number, you're OK. (Yes, there's a veneer of pagan superstition…