Di Karen Phillips (testo e foto)

A Friday evening in Irpinia. Here the sun sets at the Radici Resort between 8:20 and 9 pm. And on this particular evening, the air was cool…and so were the colors in the sky. Orange, pink and grayish white clouds were the backdrop to the vineyards behind Morabianca, Mastroberardino’s restaurant. I had a golden opportunity to attend a dinner to kick off Anteprima Irpinia. Our host, Piero Mastroberardino arrived; we hopped into our little van, and were off on a quick tour of the vineyards that led to the golf course. A walk through the club house, across the perfectly trimmed lawn and down to the swimming pool. Piero discussed his love of golf as he pointed out his 9 hole course.

Back up the hill, back to Morabianca where Massimo Di Renzo (Mastroberardino’s winemaker) was waiting for us. We all sat down to a relaxing meal with Morabianca Falanghina Irpinia DOCG and More Maoirum Fiano di Avellino DOCG DOCG(both 2009) paired with our appetizers. Redimore Irpinia Aglianico and Naturalis Historia Taurasi 2005 made it to the table as well.

My overall impression of the evening? Besides the beautiful scenery, and delicious cuisine, I enjoyed being in the company of those who make the wine biz their business. Having the opportunity to sit down at the dinner table with Piero Mastroberardino and Massimo Di Renzo and discuss their wine, their winery, and hear their opinions…just doesn’t happen every day. I even had an opportunity to share my thoughts (and photos) of a recent horizontal Taurasi wine tasting. Excited and honored are two adjectives that come to mind..

It is at moments like these when you just sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride…