Chapter 4 – Forgetting the Unforgettable

a glass of wine in Torino

Shutting Down My Imagination

But on that day in my childhood, as we were all about to leave the table at the end of lunch, Lorenzo again nodded at the wineglass clutched in my hand, asking me one last time. Realizing this might be my only chance to taste, suddenly I brought the wine to my lips. As I tilted my head back, I saw, through the glass, Lorenzo himself lit golden in the sun, poised in front of a hedge of cascading white flowers that bordered the restaurant terrace.

At the age of seven I was inhaling flowers, tasting honey, looking at Lorenzo, illuminated in front of me. That was the moment I fell in love: with Lorenzo, with Italy, with Torino, with this bubbly Scattosti wine.

But I never encountered the wine when we returned to America — which occurred shortly after that day. And I did forget Lorenzo’s “unforgettable” bright gold-brown eyes. You see, when my family returned to our little college town in the Northeastern United States, there were no wine shops with wonderfully enticing Scattosti wine, no spectacular Italian salumerias to supply us with ambrosial plates of antipasto. When I recovered from my astonishment that the people in my town didn’t even know what they were missing, I shoved the memory of that last Sunday in Torino to the back of my mind, way in the back, where early memories go, to wait until they are either shredded or revived by time.

It would be more than a decade before I allowed myself to remember, before I found the courage to begin asking people about the magical Scattosti wine. Childishly, I had always been convinced I knew the wine’s actual name, but that it was so rare that no one in the US had heard of it. How could I not have heard of this full and delicate Moscato d’Asti wine for all those years?

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