The Inside Story from Italian Wine Merchants

Swirl, Sip, Love

Posted on | August 17, 2010 | Written by Tina Benitez | No Comments

Writer Elizabeth Gilbert needed a break. In the middle of a divorce, she wanted to find new direction in her life and decided to travel the world. Trekking through Italy she ate, journeying to India she prayed, and jaunting to Indonesia she found love—not a bad plan if you have enough in savings (or a hefty enough advance on a book deal) to take off. The end result is Gilbert’s bestselling book, “Eat, Pray, Love,” and now movie starring Julia Roberts. I love to travel. I plan to eat, drink and fall in love with some new Bordeaux next month while visiting the southwest of France. And yet, while it’s fun to get new stamps on your passport, sometimes all you need to eat, pray and love—or experience new wine—is an open mind. There’s something to discover everywhere. I’m continuously discovering some new wine—new varieties, new regions. Wine from unexpected locales has become commonplace. Wine from the Pacific Northwest, and wine from Argentina were once considered weird and untrustworthy, but no longer. So how about wine from Uruguay? Less known than wine from Chile, Uruguay is actually the fourth largest wine producer in South America, though not much Uruguayan wine is imported to the States. Part of the fun of trying an unknown region’s wine is exploring a terroir from the comfort of your dining chair. It may be good, bad, terrible, or outstanding, but it’s always an adventure.

Working at IWM helps me discover the terroir of Italian wine. I’ve sampled a multitude of wines in only a short few months, and my taste for Italy has been quickly piqued. I’m constantly amazed by the incredible wine selections IWM has accumulated—it’s the most comprehensive group that I’ve ever seen under one cellar. There’s Soldera, Giacosa and smaller producers like Hilberg, San Giustiniani—the list goes on and on. I’m realizing that Italy has so much to discover. It’s going to take some time, but it’ll be fun tasting each region. I want to visit. I will visit.

Travel is therapeutic. It’s good to break away from it all and recharge. Wine and travel together are even better. You can eat, pray and love anywhere you want, and if those activities require you to travel across the world, all the better. But whether I’m home in New York or I’m journeying through several time zones, there’s always something to discover, and I’m far from done searching.


Leave a Reply