Last Thursday, twenty-two Umbra students and a staff member trouped across town to énonè, a chic wine bar in Corso Cavour, an up-and-coming section of Perugia. They were met there by Sylvia Bartolini, a sommelier and wine connoisseur who has worked in the wine industry for nearly a decade and has a wealth of knowledge about Umbrian and Tuscan vineyards, grapes, production methods — and, of course, wine. After a brief introduction to wine basics, or Wine 101, the bottles came out and the students learned how to take store and take care of wine and what the difference is between old wine and aged wine.
And then there was the tasting. It started off with a dry prosecco (a variety of Italian sparkling wine), and moved on to an Umbrian grechetto, a white. The last touch was a 2005 Goretti Arringatore, a fantastically full-bodied wine with fruits hints of the ciliegiolo grapes that it contains. While tasting the wines and learning about their properties (alcohol content, grapes, acidity, coloring, and so on), students were asked to try to pair them with some of the food on the sampling plate in front of them based on what they knew. As wine tastings go, you can’t get much better: good food, good wine, good company.