The Italian Abroad Wine Blog
The Italian abroad wine blog is my 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 food, but also wine and food 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 any good wine and enjoy plenty of it, as well as 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 Italian wine regions maps featuring DOC and DOCG wines, where you can discover the origin and the grapes making your favourite Italian wine. I also wrote a post on the Italian wine appellation system explaining and demystifying the Italian wine classification and what it really means for Italian wine lover and wine drinkers in general.
Or you can check our Youtube channel where you can watch me tasting some of our wines and answer your questions about Italian wines and grapes, from the real meaning of DOC to what is an orange wine.
Hope you enjoy reading my posts and watching my videos
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Christmas is the time of the year where we tend to spend more on a bottle of wine, we are all looking for that special bottle, and once we find the special bottle or bottles, it comes the question on how to store and serve them on the big day, storing and serving a wine correctly becomes very important, if done incorrectly can spoil the whole experience
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.
“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, hence “appassimento” wines tend to have higher alcohol content. I have seen more and more producers making “appassimento” wines, and it is already a trend, however, I am not a big fan of this style wines for two main reasons
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
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
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.
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.
I recently visited Marsala, a beautiful city located along the coast on the western most part of Sicily, a city with plenty of history and famous for giving the name to the Marsala wine, a fortified wine produced with grapes grown in the area. During my short stay, I ate great seafood, I could eat seafood and fish all day everyday, and tasted plenty of wine, but the real revelation, the hidden gem, was the Marsala wine with its several versions
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.
Panettone, the Italian Christmas cake that should be added to the Unesco Intangible heritage due to its worldwide appeal, it is now eaten all over the world, not just on Christmas day anymore and it has moved beyond what we now call “Tradizionale”, its original and nowadays, almost boring recipe, also known as Panettone Milanese, from Milan, where it was originally created the first time
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