A world without Moscato d’Asti DOCG? (Unimaginable)

moscato glass

A world without Moscato d’Asti DOCG. It’s hard to imagine, isn’t it?

But as the United States Trade Representative considers 100 percent tariffs on European Union wines, it could become a reality sooner than any of us would like to think.

Let me qualify that: My world — our world — here in America would be a world without Moscato d’Asti. That’s because if put into place, 100 percent tariffs would radically reshape the Moscato d’Asti landscape across the United States.

You’re exaggerating, I can hear you say. And you’re right. But only up until a certain point. Yes, Moscato d’Asti DOCG would still be available in the U.S. The only difference is that it would cost twice as much. The increase in price would mean that it would become prohibitively expensive for many of my fellow Americans. And that’s what really saddens me.

To be honest, it really breaks my heart: Moscato d’Asti DOCG is one of just a handful of high-quality wines from Italy that nearly all Americans enjoy or, at the very least, have experienced. While not every American drinks wines like Barbera d’Asti, Barolo, and Barbaresco on a regular basis, Moscato d’Asti is one of those wines — one of those very few wines — that Americans from all walks of life drink.

Especially for people like me who live in the southeastern United States — the South, with a capital S — where Moscato d’Asti is commonly served by-the-glass in all kinds of restaurants (and not just Italian restaurants), the wines would simply disappear from the fabric of everyday dining and socialization.

For many of us, it’s the only contact with Italian wine and authentic Italian food and wine products we have. And a world without Italy is a world without the joy that only the Bel Paese and its golden bubbles can deliver.

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Jeremy Parzen
After obtaining his Ph.D. in Italian literature at U.C.L.A. in 1997, Jeremy Parzen moved to New York City where he shifted his focus to food and wine. By 1998, he was the chief wine writer for the English-language edition of La Cucina Italiana. In 2005, he published his annotated translation of Maestro Martino's 15th century cookery book, The Art of Cooking (University of California Press). In 2007, he launched his blog DoBianchi.com (named after the Venetian expression for two glasses of white wine). Since that time, he has published countless articles on Italian food and wine, including bylines for publications like Decanter and Wine and Spirits, which named him a "Master of Place" in 2017. Known for his humanist perspective onto the world of Italian enogastronomy, he works as wine and restaurant industry consultant from his home office in Houston, where he and his wife Tracie (a native Texan) are raising their two daughters. A former rock musician and songwriter, Jeremy continues to compose and record music with and for his family. He was honored to be named an Italian Association of Wine Merchants ambassador in 2018 for his "profound scholarship in the humanities, his great knowledge of winemaking, and his excellence in communications."

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