How I Came to Love Italian Wine
by Jackie Townsend
American children don’t grow up with wine as an inherent part of meals as Italian children do. We drink milk, and while wine might be at our tables, lumped in with beer or liquor, we inherit almost a fear of it. It is illegal after all; we might be arrested if caught drinking it under twenty-one, our parents might remind us. Not to mention that it tastes horrible.
(Editor’s note: The following essay appeared in the November 1990 edition of the California Wine Press. In some ways the world has changed since then—wages have risen and the price of top-quality wines has, too--but the hand picking of winegrapes remains much the same.)
They start to gather in the darkness. It’s still a little chilly and most are wearing light jackets or wool plaid overshirts. Later they will peel these off and work in tee-shirts.