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The Italian Abroad Wine Blog

The Italian abroad wine blog is my, Andrea, wine blog and diary. I founded Italyabroad.com in 2003 and have been living abroad for almost 20 years and this blog is a collection of my thoughts mainly about Italian wine and wine in general. I come from an Italian wine making family and got acquainted with wine at a very early age, but I don't just love Italian wine, I love every good wine and drink plenty of it, I am very passionate about good food and travelling, and often my posts include a bit of everything.

To help you understand Italian wines, we have designed a series of wine maps, starting with a DOC and a DOCG wine map, where you can discover the provenance of your favourite Italian wines and I wrote this post that explains the Italian wine classification.

We also have a Youtube channel where you can watch me tasting wine and answering your questions about Italian wines and grapes, from the meaning of DOC to what is an orange wine.

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Lugana, much more than a wine

December 15, 2019    Tags: Lugana, Garda Wines View Comments (0)

If 20 years ago the wines were mainly divided into well and poorly made and the one well made were all following the same approach creating very similar wines, nowadays, even wines like Lugana have plenty of shades in between.

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Appassimento, what’s wrong with the wine industry

November 29, 2019    Tags: Amarone, Appassimento, Sforzato, Majestic, Wine trends View Comments (0)

"Appassimento” is a style of wine obtained by drying the grapes for any period after the harvesting to increase their sugar content, sugar content that once fermented becomes alcohol and “appassimento” style wines tend to have higher alcohol content, with the unfermented sugar called “residual sugar”

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Hundred shades of Barbera d’Asti

November 10, 2019    Tags: Moscato D'Asti, Barbera d'Asti, Nizza DOCG, Nizza Riserva View Comments (0)

My journey into the Barbera d’Asti and Nizza DOCG and the whole Asti region was only a short trip, a limited insight into a big wine making region, a journey I was happy to be part of. Producers in the region are facing the same climate issues as the rest of the world, with extreme weather becoming a real threat and sugar content, and alcohol, going up and up. Due to the Barbera high acidity, alcohol is not yet a problem but unless something is done urgently, Barbera d’Asti as we know it, could soon be gone

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Buttafuoco and Oltrepo’ Pavese

October 28, 2019    Tags: Buttafuoco, Oltrepo Pavese, Pinot Nero, Classic Method Sparkling Wines View Comments (0)

I have been tasting and drinking Italian wines for over 20 years and I thought I had seen everything, yes there are plenty of producers I never heard of, new wineries being launched almost on a daily basis, but when I saw a poster with a bottle of wine saying “Buttafuoco”, spit fire in Italian, it really took me a few seconds to understand what the poster was about

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When food was a joy, not a necessity

October 12, 2019    Tags: Valtellina, Sforzato della Valtellina, Nebbiolo, Local View Comments (0)

I travel a lot up and down Italy and I had not seen anything like this small shop for a long time, I cannot even recall the last time I did, but I miss buying food that way. It was more than just buying food, it was suddenly being introduced to the people making it, being educated, becoming aware of the food I was eating, appreciating it. Nowaday, is all about price and retailers like the lady are hard to find, quality is a just a logo on the box, produce are tasteless and anonymous, they could come from Italy or Brasil and we would not know, everything seems to be and taste the same. Prosciutto is not a prosciutto and Bitto is not just a Bitto, there are plenty of shades and differences in between and by shopping the way we do, we miss them.

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Tasted and approved. Every single product we stock is tasted by us.

October 1, 2019    Tags: Wine Competitions, Awards, Ratings View Comments (0)

Yesterday, when having a shower, I read on the label of the shower gel that it had been tested on the people making it. Whilst, I am sure, it is not the only shower gel being used, more than tested, by the people making it, it is the first one actually saying it.

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Marsala wine, the Sicilian hidden gem

September 25, 2019    Tags: Marsala, Sicilian Wine, Marsala Wine, Fortified Wine View Comments (0)

During my stay I tasted dozens of Marsala wines, some good and some very good, paired with food or used as a cocktail ingredient, and every time I was left surprised. Not only Marsala can be considered like a wine, but a good Marsala wine has many layers and can take the food to a new dimension. We will soon start importing Marsala wine, keep visiting our site or join our newsletter to be informed of its arrival

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Has the prosecco bubble started to crack?

September 17, 2019    Tags: Prosecco, DOCG, Valdobbiadene View Comments (0)

Historic Prosecco producers, the ones in the DOCG area, want to get rid of the “Prosecco” name on their labels and only use “Valdobbiadene” to try and differentiate their Prosecco from the cheaper versions even though I have seen plenty of cheap Valdobbiadene Prosecco.

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Industrial vs Artisan Panettone

August 15, 2019    Tags: Christmas, Panettone, Artisan, Industrial, Vegan View Comments (0)

Not all Panettone are and taste the same. With the summer coming to an end and Christmas fast approaching, the first Panettones are starting to appear. Supermarkets have already set their Christmas aisles up with their own, and Google is full of online retailers selling them

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Wine, spirits, duty and politicians

August 13, 2019    Tags: Wine, duty, Spirit, Beer View Comments (0)

Duty has always been an easy way for any Government to raise finances, often hidden and justified, as a deterrent to the binge drinking culture or to alleviate the financial impact on social services, police and the NHS. The duty doesn’t just affect wine, it touches all alcoholic drinks, based on their alcohol content, and until last year, they were all considered as one

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