Italian wine has been indelibly attached to the arts for centuries, with many of the great musicians, poets and artists of years gone by espousing its many virtues. This rich tradition, which has seen wine referenced in everything from great painting to wonderful pieces of music, has continued through to this very day and many people enjoy simple relaxing with a glass or two of their favourite vintage and listening to some music.
Of course, there are many different ways that you can enjoy wine and music in combination, so we thought we would take a look at a few of them here so that you can truly understand how these wonderful wines can meld with some of the great music of both the past and present.
Relaxing At Home
Enjoying a little music with some wine at home is how many people enjoy this wonderful combination, so if you haven’t tried it yet we thoroughly recommend it. Of course, you need to pick the perfect wine for the occasion, alongside the best music, so it all depends on where you are in your day when it comes to making your choices.
If you have just come back from a stressful day at work, or you simply want to unwind a little and let go of the various troubles of the day, there are few greater joys that putting on some music with a soft and soothing melody while enjoying the sorts of wines that are usually consumed as an aperitif. The likes of Prosecco or a nice white wine work perfectly in this situation, allowing you to not only relax thanks to the soft music that you have playing in the background, but also affording you the opportunity to refresh yourself with the simple, floral complexion of a good white wine, leaving you ready to take on whatever you need to during the rest of the day.
Of course, if red wine is more your thing then it is best to enjoy your music and wine with a good meal. A red meat dish is ideal for this situation, while your music should be something that has a little more complexity to it so that it matches the composition of your red wine. There are few things better than taking a bit out of a nice meal, following it up with a nice sip of Chianti, Barolo or one of the other great Italian red wines, and then letting the notes from a great classical piece or one of your favourite modern artists swirl around the room, allowing you to lose yourself in this wonderful combination completely.
You won’t always be alone when enjoying your wine and music, as there are many situations where you will be with a group of friends. A dinner party can go much in the same way as eating a meal by yourself, though you will likely have to bring a variety of wines along to the party and will also need to ensure that the music that you choose is both interesting to the ear without distracting people from the social aspect of the occasion. It is a little bit of a balancing act but, assuming you are with friends who appreciate both the wine and the music, getting it right can create a wonderful evening.
If the party is a little more rambunctious than this, such as a wedding reception or simply any venue that is playing louder music, you will ideally want to enjoy a simpler wine that doesn’t require you to spend too much time thinking about what you are drinking, while still offering plenty to enjoy during the occasion. Champagne is often the wine of choice during weddings and similar occasions, but if you find yourself in a place that is playing music you wouldn’t normally associate with wine drinking, you will have much more opportunity to explore and select wines that you may not normally try but could work well with the music you are listening to.
Of course, there are also few things more joyful than simply relaxing with a few friends and enjoying some conversation with music in the background. In these situations it is always good to choose music that you all enjoy, such as more recent songs, while you enjoy a lighter wine that allows you to focus as much on the people you’re with as you do on the wine and music itself.
The Concert Experience
While you are unlikely to be drinking wine at a heavy metal or rock concert, there are plenty of musical experiences that can be enhanced enormously by bringing wine to the occasion. If you have the privilege of seeing the opera, ballet or an orchestra play, there are simply few joys greater than allowing all of your senses to be overloaded by what you see, hear, smell and taste.
During these occasions, you will want a wine that you can enjoy in moderation and that will allow you to simply sit back and let everything that is happening consume you. Let the wine enchant your taste buds and allow it to swirl around your palette as the music from the concert dances around your ears. If you are simply listening to an orchestra play, try closing your eyes and letting everything you can taste and hear consume you. Alternatively, if you are watching a ballet or opera, you can wholly lose yourself to the experience, allowing you to enjoy the combination of wine, music and theatrics on a level that you never thought possible.
The Final Word
There are so many different ways to enjoy wine and music together, which is perhaps why they have been such an enduring combination for so many centuries in Italian culture. So the next time you decide that you want to sit down and enjoy a glass or two of wine, put a little thought into the music that you could play so that you enjoy a richer experience.