Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Leaning Tower of Grappa

There was a decision to be made. Should I visit the Leaning Tower of Pisa or go wine tasting at a villa with our group in Tuscany? After so many consecutive days trekking around cities on private tours, I shamefully confessed that I was worn out, and my brain, though interested in every morsel of history lesson, needed the day off. Wine tasting won the day and lopsided towers will just have to hang in there until next time.

We drove about 30 minutes from the coast into the Tuscan interior, stopping at a quiet villa called Varramista. Apparently Varramista is where the creators of the Vespa and the Fiat got married and had kids… or their kids got married and had baby Vespiats? Fespas? Anyway, there’s some connection there with the two companies, but as you can tell by my spotty recollection, I wasn’t totally tuned in to the details. We toured the villa, the Italian garden and the cellar before sitting down to an appetizing spread of meats and cheeses. I’m not much into meat in this format, but hey, when in Tuscany…
After tasting three red wines produced at Varramista, we were on to the first (and as God is my witness, my last) taste of Grappa. If you ever sipped rubbing alcohol as a post-dinner nightcap, then you know what Grappa tastes like. Oh, you don’t like to set your esophagus on fire before bedtime? Me neither, readers. Me neither. Holy tracheotomy.
Our excursion only lasted a few hours, so I didn’t have much time to have a quarter-life crisis and spontaneously purchase a Tuscan villa of my own… but it was such lovely countryside, I wouldn’t rule out an impulse buy on my next trip.

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