Wine tasting in the Euganean Hills
Ma Kettle and I visited the Euganean Hills on Sunday, May 29th, and toured two different wineries. One was a little more upscale than the other, at least as far as presentation to the visitor goes. I thought I'd give a brief description of how things work, as most VTers have never done it, and are perhaps curious.
The first one was La Montecchia (www.lamontecchia.it), located on a beautiful estate in the Euganean Hills region. The display area has a multitude of wines displayed, plus a bar from which you may sample locally produced vino while standing. We chose to sit outside in the garden however. They gave us four different wines, plus a platter of cheese, and each wine was served in a fresh glass. No one hovered over us, no sales pitch was given, no pressure to buy was applied. We sat in the garden for well over an hour. Questions were answered, and beautiful promotional material was available in most languages.
There was no charge, for either the cheese or the wine. We did purchase the wines that we liked however, but could easily have simply bid our farewell after the last glass was consumed. They operate on the assumption that if you like it, you'll buy some, but their wine doesn't necessarily appeal to everybodys pallete, and they accept that.
The second winery was Il Pianzio (www.ilpianzio.it) located in the ancient village of Pianzio on the eastern side of Monte Rua. This seems to be a more traditional type of winery, with a pleasant seating area, but not given to grandeous settings. I felt most at home here. We were given a personal tour around two different fields, showing soil quality, and then through the distillery itself. Wonderfully cool, most interesting.
Again, we sampled numerous wines they produce, and were given platters of cheeses, meats, bread, and dolce for the desssert wines. We were there for at least two hours. No pressure, and the hosts were most accomodating and gracious. We simply had to raise a finger, and another bottle was at our disposal. The glasses were not changed between wines, but a quantity of the new offering was poured into our glass, slushed about, dumped to remove the flavour of the previous sampling, and then poured half way into rather large glasses. Once again, no pressure, and no presumption or expectation for you to purchase, nor pay for your samples. I enjoyed everyone of their wines, and will continue to enjoy it with many meals in the future. LOL.
I suggest anyone travelling to Italy indulge their curiousity. Great opportunity to sample first hand what you pay big dollars for elsewhere throughout the world.
The Euganean Hills region is noted for reasonably priced wines of high quality. The harder the grape has to work to achieve maturity, then the better end result of any wine produced is a generally believed assumption