Archive for the ‘Italian Wines’ Category

The heat & humidity could be quite unbearable at times here, how would you choose to chill out on the weekends?  How about sipping a glass of Prosecco on a bus heading to Shek O, then an 8-course Thai lunch paired with 8 Italian wines?  Well, that’s how I spent my Saturday afternoon!

The classic Thai appetizer fish cake was excellent with the light refreshing sparkling Prosecco.  Then the 7 wines to follow were all from a same vineyard – Movia. (more…)


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The Kitchen for the cooking class

Chef Beppe

There was a cooking class with an Italian Chef, Chef Beppe Sardi, during the Piemonte wine trip.  Chef Beppe was late for 2 hours; somehow he was attending a conference in the morning, and on his way back he made a wrong turn on the motor way.   Before he knew it, he was at Milan.  We laughed and asked how fast he was driving to make it back to Piemonte. (more…)

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Slow Food University

Chef's Hand

When we walked out from Guido, the Michelin 1 star restaurant in Piemonte, it was dark; the air was fresh and crisp, the stars were bright … and I was thinking “how much is a Michelin star worth?”

Guido is on the grounds of the Slow Food University. The ambience was sort of like a barn, with high ceiling, brick wall and wooden floor.  The décor was quite simple but functional.  (more…)

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Maria Teresa Mascarello in the cellar

There are the traditionalists, and there are the modernists.  In Piemonte, this holds true for the 7 vineyards we visited.  Aldo Conterno, Bruno Giacosa and Bartolo Mascarello are no doubt the traditionalists. 

Of the three, the visit at Bartolo Mascarello marked a very strong impression on me.  Probably because the wine maker and owner was a woman – Maria Teresa Mascarello, daughter to the late Bartolo Mascarello. (more…)

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“80% of our production is for exports, and the 20% that we sell in the domestic market is consumed by visitors like you.” That probably set the stage for the visit at Gaja in the heart of Barbaresco.

We were greeted by Alexandria, the guide at Gaja at a small but cozy waiting area.  When we were walking down to the cellar, she said in a very polite manner, “Please don’t take any photos in the cellar, but you could in the building after the visit.”  (more…)

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Massolino, the first vineyard we visited on the Piemonte wine tour.  Franco Massolino, the very charming wine maker and owner, was waiting for us at the gate.  He greeted us individually and apologized for the construction work that’s going on.  He said next year, at around this time, there will be a proper tasting room for guests.  I laughed and said in Hong Kong, we cannot wait for 1 year. (more…)

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Piazza Duomo

The dining experience was quite extraordinary on the tour; we experienced dining at small family restaurants, at the Sandrone resident, and then the ultimate experience at two Michelin Star restaurants.

We started with the Michelin 2-star restaurant Piazza Duomo in the heart of Alba, followed by the Michelin 1-star restaurant Guido in the Slow Food University the following night.  The moment you walked into the restaurant, the ambience and the design could probably give you a sense of the style. (more…)

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My heart fell for Barolo when I tasted a bottle of 98’ Montprivito, and it was 3 years ago in Washington DC.  The floral, smoke, cherry aromas were so unique and amazing and I started my quest in understanding Italian wines.

My quest now takes me to the home of Barolo – Piemonte, Italy.  It’s a guided wine tour in the area for 5 days organized by Italian Wine Merchants.  The group is quite small, by Hong Kong standard – total of 9 people.   We are here because we all love wines, more so for some. (more…)

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Prosecco Bottega

Venetian Gold, sounds so glamorous, it’s not the precious metal, but an Italian sparkling wine in a glittering golden bottle from the Bottega winery of Italy.

When guests walked into the Hennessy Room of the Conrad Hotel, we were all greeted with a glass of the Venetian Gold in a beautiful champagne flute. (more…)

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