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Art and Wine – Italy Segreta

A red thread, or better yet, burgundy colored, binds Italians to a thing as sophisticated and prized like art, but much more accessible: wine.

 

For us Italians, wine symbolizes vitality. It represents being alive, drinking wisely, enjoying life, but also living mindfully and savoring what one imbibes. Above all, as our elders have taught us, the true art is in appreciating it regardless of age. In contrast, we find hard alcohol predictable and too sweet, a drink for clubs and lacking in history. While beer has its place and time, it doesn’t require the same lasting commitment.

 

 Wine, instead, is a quintessential part of the Italian table. Always present, synonymous with joy, happiness, the pleasure of sharing, it’s almost a status symbol, a concealed identity that reveals interesting personal details. There’s wine for dining, smooth and not too demanding, to accompany daily meals. There’s wine for appetizers with friends, with the good chance of it being a bubbly, pairing perfectly with food sometimes too salty, and if you’re more traditional, you order a prosecco; otherwise, if your palate is more refined you would more than likely go the way of a Franciacorta.

 

 Meanwhile, the Champagne can still wait. Then there’s the belief that rosé is a more feminine wine, and that the best reds are Tuscans. There’s white wine to accompany seafood dishes, red for meat (especially a good Florentine steak), and finally there’s Champagne for special occasions, perfect for “sabering”.

 

 In short, wine is what unites us when we toast someone or to something, becoming tightly bound to that moment. Valued by most, but surely preferred by those with a fine and polished palate, it’s delicate, and it often gains value, thanks to the stories and the origins of each bottle.

 

Going back as far as time, wine and art have walked a similar pace, creating an harmonious and explosive meeting, a perfect union. A tango between what life is and what it should be. Since ancient times, artists depicted scenes from daily life, mostly banquets, with tables overflowing with food and carafes brimming with dark wine.

 

Not just visual arts, but also writings and prose, have given homage to wine. Homer wrote “Wine can of their wits the wise beguile, make the sage frolic, and the serious smile.” Euripides added, “Where there is no wine, there is no love.” Dalì defined it as nectar for connoisseurs, and Leopardi, in his collection of essays, Zibaldone, wrote “Wine is the best soother without compare. Therefore, the vigor, therefore, nature.” Danish philosopher Kierkegaard, in his book In Vino Veritas, portrayed wine as a defender of truth, for who drinks it, after all, has no secrets to hide.

 

And so, in time, as man refined his ability to transform grapes in an elixir of pleasure, wineries morphed, slowly transforming into open air museums in the shade of marvelous estates.

 

Slowly, works of art increase just like the support of the wineries for the artists, particularly contemporary ones.

 

Following is an exclusive selection of wineries and art for the readers of Italy Segreta. 

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