When I first read metodo ancestrale (ancestral method) on a bottle of Prosecco I thought I'd struck idyll gold. Metodo ancestrale is an old fermentation method that predates the industrial ones that democratized Prosecco and refined ones that elevated champagne into a world-renowned superstar. Its simple roots began in Limoux, France in the 16th century. In the world … Continue reading Metodo Ancestrale
The real meaning of enlightenment can be found in the radicchio. That is my philosophy and the philosophy of the Veneto. Like wines that are classified by geographical provenance, Radicchio di Treviso has its own IGP (Protected Geographical Indication) in Italy. And a bit in the way that Prosecco is a modern invention fostered by … Continue reading Raddicchio
Ready for a bit of terminology? In the world of sparkling wine traditional method and tank method fermentation are the most common ways to intensify and stimulate bubble action in wine through secondary fermentation. It's not quite so simple, but it is generally fair to associate traditional method with Champagne and tank method with Prosecco. Tank … Continue reading Charmat Method
I've dropped the acronyms DOC and DOCG a few times here. As many of you will know, DOC is a quality assurance label in Italy. It stands for Denominazione di Origine Controllata, literally: Controlled Designation of Origin. It's a key label to know about when buying Italian wines. In the few Italian towns where German … Continue reading Conegliano – Valdobbiadene and The DOC(G), Part I
The Veneto is the largest wine producing region in Italy. The region tops Tuscany in wine production and, alongside Milan's Lombardy and Turin's Piemonte, is a powerhouse of the industrial and industrious North. Experts regard Tuscany, Piemonte and Veneto as producing the highest quality wines in Italy, but Veneto's wine-prowess is popularly overlooked within Italy … Continue reading Veneto’s Industry
Sometimes Prosecco doesn't have bubbles. It's still Prosecco, it's just still Prosecco. It's typically called tranquillo and you'd be right to ask, 'what's the point of prosecco without fizz?' Zero-bar tranquillo, first and foremost, is cool because it's a way to focus on the character of the Glera grape as it was enjoyed for centuries … Continue reading Va Tranquillo…It’s Still Prosecco!
I'm not immune to the charms of Wes Anderson's Grand Budapest Hotel or for that matter Stefan Zweig's The World of Yesterday, but I'm also not an Austro-nostalgic fighting for the return of the Südtirol to Vienna. Turbulent histories have marked Italy's eastern vineyards, inviting comparisons to France's Champagne region, since somehow the celebratory bubbles … Continue reading Vines of a Lost Emprie