It started out like a very bad foreign film. I don’t speak Italian – Sergio Rivetto doesn’t speak English. Sergio speaks German – sadly the only German I know is from Sgt. Schultz, of Hogan’s Heroes, and counting to 13 or telling someone to “rouse” doesn’t help much in casual conversation. I am “pathétique” in French, which is still a little more of that language than Sergio understands.
Still, I found myself in Alba, Italy, in a tiny wine store with Sergio Rivetto, the patron of Rivetto wines in the heart of Piedmont (I get goosebumps just writing that) having a conversation about wine. In our hour together Sergio opened up 4 wines in total for me to try. Then I opened up my wallet, became very vague with my wife about how much I spent on the Barolo and Barbaresco (I think I only mentioned the Barbera D’Alba price), and left with a MasterCard moment – priceless (except for the price of the 4 wines that I bought).