The economy is softer than a three-minute egg and it’s reflected in my travel budget. That’s why I’m staying home this week instead of flying to Italy and spending a few days at Vinitaly, the immense week-long wine fair in the lovely city of Verona. It’s a lifetime of Italian wine in a single setting, although to say that still can’t share how truly large and enthusiastic the week is.
As you might be able to tell from the gray skies in the photo, last year’s VinItaly was particularly rainy, and only a friendly bus driver saved me a long, wet walk back to my hotel after I missed the day’s last train to San Bonafacio. He asked me if I wanted “le stazione” and so he dropped me off at the bus station (le stazione delle corriere), which was long-closed, and not the train station (le stazione ferroviaria), which was very close to my hotel.
When he saw me walking along in the rain, he stopped his bus (I was the last passenger on his route) and gave me a ride to my hotel. All of this done with my poor Italian and his total lack of English. Beautiful international politics on a personal level.
Anyway, there will be plenty of good blogging from Verona, and as I read interesting posts I’ll link to them here.
One winemaker who I’d love to talk at length with is Ricardo ‘Ricci’ Curbastro, the knowledgeable and very approachable producer of methode champenoise wines Franciacorta. Susannah Gold on her blog Avvinare has a fascinating interview with Ricci, a followup of her meeting with him during the recent VINO 2010 festivities in New York City.
If you’d like to read more about VINO 2010, Charles Scicolone has an entertaining post here.