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Lacryma Christi - A Legendary Wine

Guest Author - Paula S.W. Laurita

Explore the legend of one of the world's most famous wines.

In the Campania region of Italy there are many stories surrounding food and wine. The region's most famous wine comes from Vesuvius. Vesuvius is the infamous volcano that destroyed Pompeii.

Lacryma Christi means "Tears of Christ." Tradition has it that, when Lucifer was cast down from Heaven, he descended to Vesuvius. Once there, he began to destroy everything.

At the sight Christ began to weep. One of his tears fell on the lava and caused a vine to grow. This vine produced the grapes from which the wine is created.

Another version of the tale states that when Jesus ascended into heaven moved by the beauty of the Bay of Naples beneath him and cried.

A third version of the story states, that when Lucifer was expelled from Heaven, he grabbed a chunk of Paradise and carried it with him as he fell. He dropped it on the coast of Italy at the foot of Vesuvius, where it framed the bay of Naples.

Vesuvian wine has been enjoyed since ancient times. Evidence of the area's delight in wine was preserved by Vesuvius' lava. It is said that even the god Bacchus found pleasure in the abundant wine and the company of those who lived at the foot of the volcano.

Ironically, while Vesuvius destroyed towns, its lava made the soil fertile. It produces dry and sweet white wines and a prized red (Terzigno). There are many wonderful wines produced with the same loving care as the ancient Romans.

Montesole Lacryma Christi del Vesuvio Bianco DOC is produced from the Coda di Volpe. This refers to the foxtail shape of the grape bunshes. This Lacryma Christi is a pale straw color with green tints. It has an abunance of fruit on the nose, with aromas of peaches and lemons. Unlike some syrupy Lacryma Christi wines, this is dry and friendly. It is balanced with flavors of peaches and almonds, with a mineral finish. Pair it with grilled chicken or pork.

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Content copyright © 2014 by Paula S.W. Laurita. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Paula S.W. Laurita. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Peter F May for details.

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