Above: I furtively managed to make a scan of Veronelli’s autograph when I visited the Terlato Wines International Tangley Oaks mansion earlier this year.
Luigi Veronelli, “intellectual, writer, liberatarian, literally the inventor of wine journalism in Italy,” wrote Italy’s top wine blogger Mr. Franco Ziliani this morning on his new blog Le Millle Bolle, raising a glass of traditional method sparkling wine to remember the architect of the Italian food and wine renaissance on the sixth anniversary of his passing.
Regrettably, very little of Veronelli’s writing has been translated into English (aside from what I’ve translated on my blog, where he appears often).
It’s difficult for the solely Anglophone lovers of Italian food and wine to gauge the reach and scope of Veronelli’s legacy (would Eataly have been possible — even conceivable — without him?).
Check out this amazing video, from 1975, when Veronelli was 49 years old and had yet to publish his landmark catalog of the wines of Italy (1983). It was posted in the comment thread of Mr. Ziliani’s post by the brilliant Giovanni Arcari, one of my favorite Italian winemakers and a good friend (look for Giovanni in the Franciacorta pavilion at Vinitaly this year and he will BLOW YOUR minds with the wines he makes and pours).
In it, he demonstrates how to make spaghetti alla chitarra. Italian is not required for viewing but the Pasolinian implications of the subtle dialectal inflections will not be lost on the Italophones among us.
Please join Tracie P and me in raising a glass tonight to this truly epic hero and sine qua non of contemporary Italian food and wine.