Feudi del Pisciotto Wine

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Sicily has had something of a tumultuous time of it when it comes to its reputation for quality Italian wines. Though always respected, the region has had its ups and downs, with some going so far as to decry the quality of some of the wines that were emerging from the region a number of years ago. However, Sicily’s reputation for quality is being restored thanks to a new generation of wine producers who have placed their focus back into ensuring the region’s grapes and wine producing techniques receive the recognition that they deserve. This winemakers are unlocking the true potential of the Sicilian land, which allows them to deliver quality wines that can stand proudly against any others that Italy has to offer. It has been a long time coming, but Sicily is now restored to its rightful place in the Italian wine industry. And it’s all thanks to producers like the one that we are going to shine a spotlight on today in our weekly review article. The History Feudi D Continue Reading

Athletes and Alcohol: Can You Maintain High Performance Levels

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Athletes treat their bodies like their own personal temples. They count every calorie and are exceptionally careful about what they eat and drink. After all, one wrong move could affect their performance during big competitions, and there are few things more heartbreaking for an athlete than to find that what they eat has prevented them from winning. That brings us to the question of alcohol. Can athletes drink alcohol and still expect to perform at the highest possible level? On one hand, the research suggests that they can’t. A Sports Medicine study, which was published in 2005, found that the rate of injuries among athletes who drank regularly more than doubled when compared to those who didn’t drink. The same study also found that those who had hangovers found that their athletic performance fell by over 11%. It makes for bad reading for any athlete, but it also misses out one crucial factor. The study looked at those who perhaps drink to excess. After all, moderate al Continue Reading

A Great Bruschetta with Tomato and Basil Recipe

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Over the last few weeks, your friends at Xtrawine have been helping you to cook pasta in the Italian style. If you take a moment to peruse our blog, you’ll see a bunch of great recipes for famous Italian pasta dishes, alongside some of our Italian wine recommendations that we think go perfectly with the food. We hope you’ve enjoyed the recipes so far, and have crafted a few great meals for you and your family. We’re going to keep the trend going this month by taking a look at another great Italian favourite. Only this week, we’re steering away from pasta and heading into antipasto territory. Bruschetta has been a favourite throughout Italy for many years, and has developed a bit of a reputation for quality elsewhere as well. Most people outside of Italy tend to enjoy Bruschetta with tomatoes, so let’s take a look at a great bruschetta recipe that makes use of both tomatoes and basil. The Ingredients Of course, you can’t get to cooking if you don’t have any ing Continue Reading

Tenuta Ulisse Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Amaranta

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As we all know, the Italian wine industry has a huge amount of prestige behind it. Much of this comes from the many winemakers who have been plying their trade in the country for centuries. These people created the foundations on which a global entity was built, and now the Italian wine industry is the envy of the entire world. Even its greatest rival – France – is finding it difficult to compete with the Italians when it comes to wine production and, as importantly, consumption. These favourable industry conditions have also led to a lot of new companies taking their place in the annals of Italian wine history. Alongside the famous names that we all know and love, there are a lot of newcomers who are looking to establish themselves. Some do this through innovation. They add interesting twists onto old classics, or use production methods that differ from those traditionally used in the creation of certain wines. Others have their eye towards regeneration of a region. As spect Continue Reading

Spotting a Fake Wine: Everything You Need to Know

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It wouldn’t be quite accurate to say that there is a fake wine epidemic in Italy. However, it is certainly a problem, and one that has persisted for a number of years. Counterfeiters are always looking for ways to make more money, and they can do that by creating copies of successful wines and selling them onto people and vendors who are none the wiser. Of course, this presents a huge problem to the Italian wine industry. For one, it takes money out of the pockets of the men and women who have worked so hard to create the original, and best, versions of these wines in the first place. People who buy a counterfeit wine based on the name attached to it also end up being duped. They get wines of inferior quality, despite paying as much as they would have paid for the real deal. There’s also the issue of ingredients. Real Italian wines come with certification – IGT, DOC, or DOCG – that denote their quality and adherence to certain protocols. A counterfeit wine may carry a for Continue Reading

Tagliatelle With Chicken and White Wine Sauce Recipe

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As we all know by now, Italy is the home of truly great pasta dishes. If you ever have a chance to visit the country, you’ll even see that practically every region has its own spin on pasta, and a local dish that demonstrates just why Italy is considered one of the most important culinary cities in the world. If you’re a regular ready of the Xtrawine blog, you’ll have seen that we’ve offered up a few recipes for pasta dishes in the past. Hopefully, some of you have given them a try and enjoyed your meal with a nice glass of Italian wine. Today, we’re going to look at another great Italia pasta favourite. You may have heard of tagliatelle. While perhaps not the most popular of pastas, at least in international territories, it has an indelible link to the Italian wine industry. Primarily found in the Emilia-Romagna and Marche regions, it looks almost like strips of pasta. Think of an elongated stick of gum and you have the right idea. A rough pasta, it’s great whe Continue Reading

A Recipe for Pesto Alla Genovese

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Of all of the foods that have become synonymous with Italian culture, it is probably pasta that stands as one of the most important. A staple of many people’s diets all over the world, the ease of cooking pasta is complemented ably by its versatility. The simple fact is that you can enjoy pasta in so many different ways, that it should come as no surprise that it has become one of the most popular foodstuffs that the world has to offer. That also brings us nicely around to the point of today’s article. Every so often we like to offer up a recipe that you can follow to create a classic Italian dish, and we have decided to do just that this week. So what dish are we going to make today. Well, if you were paying attention earlier on you’d have guessed that it’s a pasta dish, and it’s one that has been a staple of the Italian diet for many years. We are, of course, talking about Pesto Alla Genovese Pasta. So let’s stop delaying and get right into the recipe. Of course, Continue Reading

The 2017 Italian Wine Harvest

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The Autumn is upon us, which only means one thing in the Italian wine industry – the harvest. A special time of year for all involved, the harvest is when the erstwhile winemakers of the country finally have the opportunity to reap what they’ve sown. All of their labours up to this point culminate in the picking of the grapes that will be used to create the Italian wines that we all know and love. Of course, the work doesn’t end at the picking. In fact, you could argue that it is at this point where the work really begins. While the agricultural skill needed to grow great grapes is undeniable, it is in the processing and ageing of those grapes that the wines that we will enjoy over the next few years really take form. Each harvest is different. Various issues affect the quality of the crop, which is why you will occasionally hear Italian wine connoisseurs refer to certain years as “vintage years”. This are the years where everything came together to allow for a crop of Continue Reading

How Does the Most Expensive Wine in the World Stack Up?

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As anybody who keeps track of the Italian wine industry knows, prices can get astronomical. While the wines here at Xtrawine generally fall into the affordable category, there are many wines in the world that sell for thousands upon thousands of dollars. So what causes these high prices? It’s really a combination of things. For example a wine that was produced in very limited quantities will generally carry a higher price tag, especially if the wine is well-regarded for its quality. In fact, the combination of low supply and high quality is a perfect recipe for high prices in any industry, and the Italian wine industry is no different in that respect. There’s also age to consider. Older wines often sell for more than newer vintages, primarily because they have had the time to mature properly. Of course, this assumes that whoever kept the wine did a good job of maintaining it. An old wine that was not stored correctly is not going to sell for much, regardless of how long it ha Continue Reading

Kriter Rosè

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While we spend most of our time focusing on Italian wine here at Xtrawine, we also recognise the quality of other wines produced around the world. The French, in particular, have always offered up a lot of competition to Italian wine producers. In fact, the two countries have a friendly rivalry in the wine industry and often find themselves jockeying for recognition as the top wine producing country in the world. For this week, we have decided to set that rivalry to one side and focus on a French producer in our wine spotlight article. Of course, with so many amazing producers to choose from, it’s not the easiest task to select a producer that we feel is worthy of this place on our blog. However, after much consideration, we feel we’ve landed on the perfect company to showcase. It’s a company that has been slowly building a reputation for itself in the industry, so we’re going to do our bit to offer them some exposure. This week, we’re going to take a look at Kriter, Continue Reading

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