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Est! Est!! Est!!! - Wine in LazioAlthough Lazio is not a well known wine producing region, it does produce some excellent varieties. One of the most famous is Est! Est!! Est!!! produced in Montefiascone, a town to the North of Rome near Lake Bolsena.

There is a legend surrounding the rather unusual name of this wine. The story goes that in the 1100s a German bishop, Johannes Defuk, was on his way to Rome for the coronation of the Emperor. Being a great connoisseur  of wines, he sent a runner ahead to scout out the very best local tipples at each and every inn. The runner had to write “Est”, on the door of each inn in which good wine was to be found in order that the bishop knew to stop there.

When he arrived at Montefiascone, the runner was so impressed by the white wine he found there that “Est” was not enough. To express his excitement at finding such an excellent wine, he wrote instead “Est! Est!! Est!!!”, emphasising that if there was one place the bishop must stop it was here. He did, and it is said that he fell in love with the wine so much that he returned to Montefiascone after the coronation in Rome and remained there for the rest of his days. In fact, it is said that he died from drinking too much of it!

How much of this story is true is in fact unknown, but what we do know is that there is a tomb in the church with his name on it, and every year, during the wine festival in August, a barrel of wine is poured over his tomb and the citizens of the town re-enact the story.
The wine itself is made with Malvasia and Trebbiano grapes. It is very clear and with a straw yellow colour, a dry, citrus flavour and a very full, grassy nose. It is best drunk with cold starters, salads and fish or vegetable based dishes with relatively light, mild flavours.

With its interesting history, wine enthusiasts are bound to want to try this wine if they are in the Rome area for their wedding or honeymoon. In the first two weeks of August in particular the Est! Est!! Est!!! wine festival is a fun (and tasty!) way to spend a couple of days with wine tasting, plenty of food and historical re-enactments.

There are plenty of locations in and around Rome to act as a base for travel or even as a wedding venue - just take your pick!

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