So you have decided to go to Sardinia, a Mediterranean island southwest of Rome. You can see their bronze age stone fortresses called nuraghi that are found nowhere else on earth. To some extent Sardinia is the most traditional part of Italy. But itís also home away from home for jet setters who haunt the Costa Smeralda in the islandís northeast. Iím told that the Presidential Suite at the Cala di Volpe has a private pool. On the other hand Costa Verde at the opposite end of the island is accessible by unpaved roads. The mines have been abandoned. Try to get there before itís ďdeveloped.Ē Sardinia is known for unusual food such as Cavallo (horse meat) and Ricci (sea urchins). If you feel lonesome for Aragosta (lobster), Sardinia is perhaps your best bet in Italy but remember to bring your wallet.
Sardinia is home to at least one festival per month. Perhaps the most spectacular is the Festa di SantíEfisio, held in the capital Cagliari and nearby Nora to honor a martyr beheaded by a Roman soldier in 303. Other festivals include men dressed in goatskins and horse races with masked riders.
Sardiniaís only wine with a top of the line designation, Vermentino di Gallura DOCG comes from the same general area as its posh resorts. It seems the local grapes love the areaís thin layer of sandy topsoil over solid granite. Iím sure that you wonít feel any granite under the sand at Costa Smeralda beaches. The white Vermentino grape is grown all over the island. Other white varieties include local Nuragus and Vernaccia and the international Moscato and Malvasia. Local red varieties include Monica and Cannonau; international red varieties include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah. There are a lot of sweet wines produced on this island that never make it to the mainland, much less to North America.
Companies selling wine tours of Sardinia include Delicious Italy, Holidays in Sardinia, and Wine Tour Italia. Sardinia wineries that accept visits include Sella & Mosca in Alghero, Vitivinicola Alberto Loi in Cardedu, Contini Attilio in Cabras, and Tenute Dettori in Sennon. A few words of warning are in order. Make sure that you check ahead of time for opening hours and whether English is spoken. Some places may charge admission; others may expect you to buy some of their products.
Levi Reiss has authored or co-authored ten books on computers and the Internet, but to be honest, he would rather just drink fine Italian or other wine, accompanied by the right foods. He teaches classes in computers at an Ontario French-language community college. Visit his website www.travelitalytravel.com devoted to Italian travel with an accent on fine Italian wine and food. Visit his central wine website www.theworldwidewine.com with weekly reviews of $10 wine and columns devoted to various aspects of wine including wine and food, humor, trivia, organic and kosher wine and lots more.
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Wine tours, wine vacations, wine holidays in Sardinia, Italy