Just across from Piazza Bra is the former palace known today as Gran Guardia, it’s been the site of Opera Wine since 2011. It’s a good space, too, able to accommodate lots and lots of people without seeming too big, or too impersonal. Given that it’s a historical building, it’s also full of inner charm, always a nice benefit no matter where in the world we are.
(above: Gran Guardia, before VinItaly)
@MyOperaWine is a collaboration between Italy’s largest organizer of fairs/Trade shows (including VinItaly) and Wine Spectator magazine. Their 100 Finest Italian Wines list does not resemble my own list of 100 Finest Italian Wines, there’s some overlap, but not too much. But that’s the thing about wine, it appeals to a huge cross-section of people, from all walks of life in all different places, all with their own tastes/preferences, so no two lists are likely to look the same.
Opera Wine is a great chance to meet some old/new friends, taste past vintages, etc.; it’s a great place to learn. This post is meant to share some of what I learned during this year’s program, on a warm (~70F), and sunny Spring day in Verona, Italy.
(above: panoramic photo inside the Gran Guardia at this year’s event, ~ 180 degree view)
This year’s event had more than 100 wines, 104, if I recall correctly. I tasted a lot of them, most of them, but not all of them; it’s only 3 hours long and many/most times one has to wait to get a pour (as most will simply stand in place after receiving their pour – because no one else is there). But, it’s part of the game, it’s not going to change, and it’s just one of life’s reminders to always take the good with the bad. It’s a fun event, a bit crazy, a bit staged, but ultimately it’s a big wine celebration, so almost impossible to screw up.
The event is (sub-)billed as 100 great producers, so it’s not a The Best list – no such list can exist, everyone’s idea of what/who is the best, will differ – sometimes a lot, sometimes just a little. The point is beware of The Best (list) of anything, usually the author is talking more about themselves in their involvement in the product/place/whatever than the thing itself. For example, how TED didn’t win an Oscar, I’ll never know. 🙂
My tasting notes can be found HERE, at CellarTracker, the reason I put the notes there is it’s a whole lot easier to read there then on this blog site; there are A LOT of notes. And I wasn’t about to create ~ 100 separate posts, so I think this is a good solution.
I’ll leave you with some photos, people seem to like photos.
I’ll probably edit this post later, but I’ve got about 3,000 other tasting notes and more than a hundred stories, at least I’ve got (the bulk of) this off my to-do list.