About 12 years ago, I lived in Italy as part of a six-week study abroad program for college credits. I visited small towns, big cities and met some wonderful people that I still keep in touch with today. It truly was life-changing, and there isn’t a day that goes by when I don’t dream of returning.
When I attended the Bertolli Virtual Wine Pairing event earlier this week, it really brought me back. I learned so much from Stacie Hunt, a certified Sommelier and vino Italiano expert. These are a few takeaways that I was happy to learn:
The difference between Italian wine and wines from other countries-
Italian Wine has a sense of place. When you drink the wine, you really taste the region whether it’s minerals, florals, fruit, etc. Also, most Italian wines are between 12-14% alcohol content, so it won’t overwhelm the meal.
How to taste wine-
The Five S’s: Sniff, Swirl, Sniff, Sip, Savor. We learned that the scent becomes stronger after swirling. Who knew?
On wine temperatures-
Never drink white wine too chilled, or red wine too warm. Don’t be afraid to ask your waiter for an ice bucket if your red wine is too warm.
Pair white wines with fish, and red wines with meat, right?
Not necessarily. If you need to think fast, you can follow this suggestion however it is not a rule. A nice pinot cuts the creaminess of an alfredo dish, prosecco goes well with fried chicken or popcorn, a chardonnay can be sipped while enjoying a steak and abruzzo can be enjoyed with fish.