Italian 101

Two of my kids are taking Italian in school this year. So i thought i would brush up on my own Italian lessons and investigate the world of grappa [Italian for moonshine].

Grappa is made from grapes – specifically the distillation of skins, seeds, stems, and pulp that is left over after the pressing of the grapes to extract the juice.   Actually, the best white lightning i’ve ever tried was some home-brew prune flavoured grappa.  It’s good to have Italian friends.

I recently obtained a beautifully shaped bottle of Bottega Grappa [$29 LCBO] in order to study the italian language and culture a little more in depth.  I also obtained a bottle of Limoncino, a lemon flavoured digestif that comes in a peculiar flounder shaped bottle [and by peculiar i mean that my daughters exclaimed “awesome” at the sight of it].

The grappa I drank two ways – ice-cold and room temperature.  Ice cold i loved the cool feel on my tongue and the warmth it created on the way down.  However, room temperature is where Bottega’s Grappa shines. The light, floral, taste of the grapes came through in such a delicate manner with a slight honeysuckle sweetness on the finish.  Yikes, this goes down easy!

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The Limoncino was beautiful in the bottle and glass, but nobody on the tasting panel [my wife, brother-in-spain, his wife, or M] developed an affinity to it.  So i served it to my Italian neighbour who has just finished an al fresco meal and she finished it happily.  I guess no matter how much i love Italy, i can’t hide the fact that i’m not Italian.

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We did have fun with the photos for this blog.  Anyone else seen a 31 yr old make bunny ears over a glass of grappa?  Didn’t think so.  We’re not Italian, but we know how to have fun.

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About Travis Oke

Wine writer / consultant View all posts by Travis Oke

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