Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Prosecco Picnic: How Extra Dry It Is!

Cartizze is the name of a prized hill in the Prosecco region of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene -- about 262 acres of vineyards that constitute the area's fabled cru. Several producers own a piece of this famous terroir, located about an hour's drive north of Venice, or at least have access to its grapes. The wine they make from these vineyards is usually a lightly sweet sparkling wine with good acidity -- generally a dry or extra dry and, occasionally, a brut. Fermented in tanks to preserve the Prosecco grape's floral characteristics, the sparkling wine from Cartizze makes an excellent picnic wine.

Which was reason enough to saddle up for an alfresco affair in Bisol's own patch of Cartizze to eat the elegant cuisine of Marco Bortolini (standing) of Da Gigetto restaurant in Miane and to drink the elegant Proseccos of the Bisol family (seated, rear table, at 11, 12, 1 and 4 o'clock), including a bottle produced from grapes grown around our picnic area. The author is at 3 p.m. at the rear table, and fellow writers Robert Whitley, Susan Westmoreland, and Tom Stevenson, along with photographer Peter Sukonik, are scattered among the tables. Behind the tree at rear, pointing skyward, is an ancient cannon to protect us from hailstorms.

How sweet, or at least off-dry, life is!

Until the next time...

Roger Morris

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