No matter the nationality, the one language humanity has in common is Food (& Wine)
And thus begins my story of Gaetano Petrillo
Being a reader of financial and economic magazines – the ones I love the most are the free ones in British Airway lounge – which is how I came upon Gaetano. I always start a magazine from the back and this time that’s where I found the article that made me say: ‘oh wow we’re meeting this guy’. I cannot even tell you which magazine it was, I only know that it was an unlikely place for one page article on Food and Wine in Campania Italy.
My search started with knowing that I needed to find “thewinebus.it” – so me and my friend, Mr. Google got started on the search. You would think easy peasy right? I was given the exact website to go to? Well, not so fast my friend. It just wasn’t an active website (at the time), which caused me to try to locate him via other Mr. Google searches. And this is what I found:
Alright I was HOOKED – his charismatic gestures, eyebrows smiling for the filming, his “spritzer” at the end along with his wonderful words “but ah thees night I don’t work because I’m drinking and when I am drinking I don’t work”. Now… because of Gaetano video & the Wine Bus, it seemed like a natural thing to add to our ‘to do list’ – since Napoli was where we wanted to go to see Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius. So to anyone who’s every played Mario Cart on the Nintendo – I shall use Mario’s phrase “Let’s-go”!
I eventually sourced Gaetano and his wine bus tour through Facebook and voila we were off with a date and time, which meant it was our last wonderful thing to do before leaving Napoli.
About the Wine Bus Tour. His service is a 10 out of 10. We were picked up and right away he hooks us into his WiFi so that we can stay connected during the tour – which was great for posting fun pictures on Facebook. We travel for just over an hour into the wine region of Campania in Italy. The conversation is easy as well as interesting – because the happy, easy going person I found on Youtube video is even better in person.
Our first winery was Antico Castello Winery. We were greeted by Francesco and shown the production and explained the history, grape varietal and all methods used in their final product we love so much – WINE! Here’s a link to their winery and wines: http://www.anticocastello.com/default.aspx?Id=2
Dave and I also met Chiara – Francesco’s sister. Together they are the winery. Their love and passion for all things wine is best tasted in the most delicious wine (I think) they make called Taurasi.
As part of The Wine Bus Tour – I had asked Gaetano to organise lunch knowing we would be ‘tasting’ wine. Let me explain how wine tasting is done with this fabulous tour. First off it’s wine drinking! No tasting and spitting out, I mean a lot of work, time and effort went into making that wine. Second the family at Antico Castello – including Mom, a retired doctor, made us lunch! So food and wine! Now that’s a combination I can live with! “Mamma’s Tiramisu” was the lovely finishing tasting to the food and Dave said that if his Mother could cook like this we may not have been married! (hahaha said the Wife!)
We ended the morning into the early afternoon with some wine purchased and shipped to Poland (Sorry friends in Canada wine is duty free within the EU); a couple of Italian kisses and wine for Christmas dinner!
ROUND 2 Winery was off to Sella delle Spine and guess what? MORE WINE and MORE FOOD! The owner is Luigi Caggiano – better known as Gino. He also grows the wine of the region – grape that is the Taurasi wine. How can we resist drinking – not tasting – such wonderful wine, accompanied by the food that Gino served us (& made).
Here’s the link to his website and vineyard (seems to be only in Italian though): http://www.selladellespine.com/index.php
We enjoyed the village that his wine tasting room was in and we had the place to ourselves, along with Gaetano.
Once we had tasted – ummm drank – the wonderful wines that Gino produces at Sella delle Spine, we were off to his winery and family home. It was a beautiful day, in the late fall afternoon to visit his vineyard. The tour of his production facility was nice but the beauty of his location was the draw!
Now back to my story of Gaetano Petrillo….
Sometimes in life you look for one thing and you discover that you are given something else.
What I mean is that we found Gaetano & thewinebustour.it because of our love and interest in Wine & Food. What the universe gave us was a kind, thoughtful, gregarious, happy man that we will stay in touch with. He will be welcome to our home, family & friends in Vancouver. He’s a friend to bring home. Gaetano has the “gioia di vivere” (the French use joie de vivre). It’s infectious and why anyone travelling to see Pompeii or Mount Vesuvius on their bucket list really needs to add his tour: http://www.thewinebus.it
THANK YOU Gaetano for an amazing day and sharing your local love of all things Campania!