With so much flavor combined with substance and simplicity, it’s no surprise that Italian food is a perennial winner in world-favorite cuisines. And the nation’s many and varied, delicious pasta dishes are largely the reason why. As ever when it comes to food, Emilia Romagna has more than its fair share of tasty pasta specialties, […]
Known as Italy’s Food Valley, with good reason, the western part of the Emilia Romagna region is home to some of the nation’s – and the world’s – favorite foods. Magnificent platters of local salami, prosciutto, mortadella, and many other of the area’s salumi, or cured meats, along with Parmigiano Reggiano, are a large part […]
One of the most enduring Italian stereotypes is the ‘mammone’: spoilt, live-in mummy’s boys who expect their parents to pay the rent, cook their food, and iron their shirts. It is somewhat analogous to the state of Italy’s white wine industry in the mid-1900s. For centuries, Italian winegrowers have been spoilt. Of course, they’re spoilt […]
In the hills of Friuli-Venezia Giulia, tradition has always counted for a great deal. True, the region planted great swathes of international varieties like Sauvignon Blanc in the 20th century, mindful of the rising popularity of this very bankable grape. However, winegrowers also continue to champion their viticultural heritage, increasing the acreage of indigenous varieties […]
Every wine lover, critic, sommelier, and buyer has an opinion on Tuscany. Each of them will have a set idea of what this corner of Italy offers – the majority coalesce around an archetype best represented by Chianti Classico and Brunello di Montalcino. That is to say, exquisite red wines based on the Sangiovese grape. […]
The destinies of Vermentino and Sardinia have long chartered a parallel course. Until recently, this beautiful island (widely adored for its spectacular landscape and pristine beaches) had little clout in the fine wine department. Indeed, a flurry of government-subsidized plantings in the 20th century did little for the island’s reputation; Sardinia was covered in high-yielding […]
Italy used to have zero cachet in the white wine market. The small volume exported in the mid-1900s seldom elicited a positive response from critics or consumers: it wasn’t so much a hit-and-miss as avoid at all costs! The cause? A potent – and pernicious – combination of laziness, poor viticulture, outmoded methods, and archaic […]
Regular visitors to our blog may have detected a certain sniffiness toward this ubiquitous variety. You might construe this as a simple case of jumping on the bandwagon: wine critic and author Ian D’Agata describes Trebbiano Toscano as one of the most maligned white grapes in Europe. Represented in over 80 DOC appellations, Trebbiano Toscano […]
You can level many legitimate criticisms at Italian wine producers. Or, indeed, at Italian wine. Their labels can be overly complicated due to the myriad of designations and separate appellations recognized under Italian law. Moreover, the country’s obsession with importing French varieties in the 20th century led to a certain homogenization of its wine culture, […]
In 2021, British retailer Marks & Spencer welcomed a new brand of Ribolla Gialla into its wine range. It represented a historic milestone for the growers of Friuli-Venezia; the Italians have long cultivated an astonishing array of indigenous grapes and unique tastes. Indeed, you could spend a lifetime and still not get to the bottom […]
The Italians, for all their virtues, have damaged the reputation of this noble variety. Pinot Grigio: the name sends a shudder down the spine of any self-respecting wine snob. For decades, bulk producers have been churning out dilute, insipid white wines from this grape, the darling of supermarkets worldwide. The chief culprit (other than lazy […]
Pinot Bianco (Pinot Blanc to the French) is the most misunderstood grape variety cultivated in Italy today. A lighter-skinned mutation of Pinot Noir, the grape was historically confused with its cousin Chardonnay in the vineyards of Italy, particularly in the hills of Alto Adige. But even when growers recognized the variety as Pinot Bianco, it […]
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Cellar Tours is a Luxury Travel Specialist, operating since 2003 and offering exclusive Mercedes chauffeured Gourmet Vacations in Chile, France, Italy, Ireland, Portugal, South Africa, and Spain. We specialize in luxurious custom designed vacations, events and incentives related to food and wine. We are proud members of Slow Food, UNAV (Travel Agency Association in Spain), and the IACP (International Association of Culinary Professionals).