Pandolfa Est 1941 Sangiovese Pandolfo Riserva

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The Italian wine industry is littered with stories of estates that seem to have fairly small histories until you start digging a little deeper to uncover the secrets lost within. What one person may see as a vineyard established a couple of decades ago may actually have been used to produce wines for centuries. Such storied vineyards carry centuries of tradition that transfer into the wines that the current occupants produce, and thus should be respected as the iconic locations that they are. Of course, not all historical vineyards lose their stories to the passage of time. Many new producers take over such historical vineyards precisely because their histories warrant such great respect. That is exactly the case with today’s spotlighted producer. Though not exactly a new name in the Italian wine industry, Pandolfa is still something of a baby when it compares to the age and lineage of the vineyards that it has ownership of. This is the basic story of those vineyards. The Hi Continue Reading

Common Myths About the World of Wine

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In an industry that is so steeped in legend and tradition, it should come as no surprise that a lot of myths have cropped up about wine. Some of these myths are harmless. They may be little stories about wine that aren’t verifiable but add to the overall allure of the industry and encourage people to explore more wines. Other myths have a more damaging effect. The most absurd Italian wine myths can even put people off from exploring wine completely, which damages the industry and prevents people from discovering some truly marvellous drinks. That’s why the team at Xtrawine has decided to take a look at some of the weird, wonderful, and downright silly myths that surround the world of Italian wine. Myth #1 – Varietal Wines Are The Best A lot of people will espouse the idea that the only good wines are those made using a single grape variety. A Chardonnay or a Merlot will always be better than a wine that uses a blend of different grapes. That couldn’t be further f Continue Reading

Brezza Barolo

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The King of wines. We have spoken about it so many times in the past, and with good reason. Barolo has been, for centuries, one of the most famous Italian wines in the world. It’s enjoyed by everybody from the royalty that have the wine its name to the connoisseurs that appreciate the many intricacies that go into the creation of a good vintage. The name carries a certain amount of weight in the Italian wine community and that weight brings with it a reputation. Barolo is a great wine precisely because its producers have dedicated themselves to everything that makes the wine so special. That’s why it takes a producer with a great deal of talent if a Barolo is to stand out from the pack. Most of the Barolos you will drink are good. But only a few are great. This week, we will be looking at a producer that is capable of making great Barolo. Brezza has, for many years, dedicated itself to the production and promotion of Barolo, both in Italy and the world at large. We’ll Continue Reading

Wine and Jazz – The Perfect Pairing

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They often say that music is the language of the soul. It’s a way for people to communicate what lives in them deep down inside. You could say the same for wine. Every bottle you drink it steeped in the hard work and passion that the great Italian winemakers bring to their work. There is no form of music that offers so much room for creative expression as jazz. A freeform musical style since its beginnings, jazz has always been the realm of the improvisers, the impresarios, and the innovators. It’s freeform music at its most flamboyant. Jazz does away with the styles and structures of many modern musical genres. Even so, there is an elegance to jazz. It is not something that any musician can play. A great deal of talent goes into jazz compositions and you can always see that, no matter how far the musicians stray away from the rules. For that, and many other reasons, jazz and wine have always gone together well. We’re going to look at a few reasons why. The Talent Tha Continue Reading

Reasons You Should Visit Trieste on Your Trip to Italy

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There are so many amazing places to visit when you go on a trip to Italy. Many tourists go for the big cities, and with good reason. Rome and Florence are filled with stunning art and architecture the likes of which you won’t see anywhere else in the world. Venice, on the other hand, stuns visitors with its vast canals. But, what about Trieste. We’re betting that a few of you reading this article have never even heard of Trieste. That’s okay. It rarely tops any lists when it comes to the most visited placed in Italy. But, we think it should. Trieste is a gorgeous wine region that has all of the joys of Italian life to offer. That’s why we’re going to shine a spotlight on it today by giving you a list of reasons why you should add Trieste to your Italian tour itinerary. The Wine As a wine retailer, we’d be remiss if we didn’t point out that Trieste offers a range of stunning wines that you can wet your palate with. The wine tourist will love getting lost in Continue Reading

Elena Fucci Aglianico del Vulture Titolo

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When you think of that most famous Italian wine companies you think of exactly that – companies. Most people associate the wines that they drink with the businesses that are behind them. It is rare indeed for a single individual to rise so highly in the industry that his or her name become synonymous with the wine they produce. However, that’s exactly what has happened with the individual that we are going to shine a spotlight on this week. Elena Fucci has spent the better part of 20 years building a stellar reputation in the Italian wine industry. Building on the lessons she learned from her family, she has taken the Fucci name to places it has never been before and accolades have followed from all over the global wine community. So, how did it all get started? Let’s try to answer that question by taking a look at the history of Elena Fucci before we dive into one of the best vintages of wine she has produced so far. The History Elena Fucci grew up around wine. Her f Continue Reading

The Benefits of Wine and the Mediterranean Diet

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We have spoken at length in the past about just how good wine is, when consumed in moderation, for your health. Research has shown that a glass or two of red wine per day can help you avoid a range of health issues. From your heart through to your risk of suffering a stroke, red wine has many health benefits that millions around the world enjoy. Many of those benefits extend to the Mediterranean diet in general. Rich in vegetables and healthy meats, many people around the Mediterranean enjoy long and healthy lives because of the foods and wines that they choose to eat. Here we are going to make a real case for the Mediterranean diet. Hopefully, we’ll convince more than a few of you to put some thought into changing your dietary habits. The combination of the right food and good wine can have all sorts of benefits that you may not have realised previously. Low in Processed Foods Mediterranean cuisine tends to focus on the use of fresh and seasonal ingredients. That’s why Continue Reading

Wine and the Sunset

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There are truly few sights that are quite as stunning as a good sunset. Watching the sun slowly fade out of view, often as it hides behind clouds and occasionally peeks out before heading over the horizon, will help you wind down your day with a beautiful visual the likes of which only Mother Nature is capable of providing. There’s a reason why sunset is considered one of the most romantic times of day. Sitting with a loved one and absorbing all of the beautiful colours a sunset can create is an experience that you can’t imitate in any other way. As with almost all things in life, a good sunset can be made even better with the right glass of wine. Picture the scene. You’re sat outside with friends admiring the last light of the day and you take a little sip of an amazing wine to commemorate the occasion. There are plenty of amazing Italian wines to choose from too. Some may prefer the freshness of a Prosecco, whereas others might want to get lost in the complexity of a good Continue Reading

Tasca d’Almerita Contea di Sclafani Rosso del Conte

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Throughout the course of the Italian wine industry there have been many innovators. Some focus on bringing new techniques into the world of wine. They may take an approach to barrelling or ageing their wines that other producers haven’t thought of, creating subtle differences that set their wines apart from the rest. Others focus on the growing of their grapes and different combinations that may not fit with the traditionally accepted norms of the industry but create wines whose qualities cannot be denied. In some cases, these innovators get vilified by some in the wine establishment. Their efforts fall upon deaf ears for a while, at least until the quality of their products shine through. Others find an industry that is more than willing to accept their work. At times, it can feel like the luck of the draw. Today’s spotlighted wine producer is a true innovator. It was in the 1960s that many first recognized the work of Tasca D'Almerita. The company came to the fore when it p Continue Reading

Barbera Wine

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Not to be confused with Barbaresco, which shares a similar name but is actually a different type of wine, Barbera is the third of the major B wines to come from the Piedmont region. Though it does not share the same level of popularity and understanding as its two more famous cousins, it is an absolutely stellar wine in its own right and one that we think is deserving of a little more attention than it gets outside of Italy. Of course, you need to know what you’re letting yourself in for with Barbera wine, just as you do with any other kind of wine. That’s why we are not going to take a look at the wine in a little more detail so you can understand where it comes from and why you should consider buying it the next time you go shopping for wine. The Grape Though Barbera comes from the same region as Barolo and Barbaresco, it doesn’t share the same grape. While the King of Wines and its slightly less illustrious cousin both share the Nebbiolo grape in their production, Bar Continue Reading

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