Yesterday was a pretty incredible day here. Actually, the day before was pretty incredible too… from a wine blogger’s perspective. We received access to people and places that the average tourist or person interested in wine would never see: people like the wine makers, the growers, the agronomists; and places like the barrel rooms and private homes and, most importantly, the land where the grapes grow and are cultivated.
It’s made me fall in love with wine all over again: the way the sun hits Sangiovese grapes that dangle from the vine; the red clay of the land; how essential the place is to the wine. Really, when it comes to wine, place is at the heart of it–and what makes it so, so special.
Up on the hills outside of Montalcino yesterday, I watched as a grower–whose family has owned a vineyard that produces Brunello di Montalcino since 1971, which many experts argue is some of the best wine in the world–picked off leaves on a vine so the sun could strike the grapes just right. I watched his hands touch the clay earth. I listened as DaVinci agronomist Lorenzo Danielli explained how he doesn’t “make wine, [ he] makes Brunello.” Because to him it’s more than about wine–it’s about this specific kind of wine that grows so well here.
To know a land so well, to know its ins and outs in such a way as to know its core–truly its core–is a type of romance. Why should people love wine? Because it’s about so much more than just you on your back porch drinking a glass of it in the summer sun. It’s about the place and the people behind it–the process it took to make it into your home, into your glass, into your mouth. And, somehow, at the same time, you sitting on your back porch enjoying the wine is at the heart of it too. That connection. That emotion.
If you drink wine and feel something (and I’m not talking about a buzz), then you know what I mean. Wine gives us moments. I will never forget the Ser Piero Chardonnay Igt Toscana I drank last night, looking over the Tuscan hills at a restaurant in San Casciano. I’ll think of the perfect evening breeze, the way the light hit the glass making the wine a beautiful straw color, the sea brill I ate with sliced potatoes, and–of course–the company I kept, my fellow Storytellers and the DaVinci team who have all given me the trip of a lifetime.
So, tell me, why do YOU love wine??
To see more pictures, visit my flickr page.