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Raise your glass—it’s National Wine Day!

Morgan Shepard

“A day without wine is like a day without sunshine”—anonymous

Today is a special day for wine lovers all across America. May 25 is designated as National Wine Day. Celebrated as a sister holiday to National Drink Wine Day in February, this is a perfect opportunity to enjoy a glass of your favorite wine in the company of friends and family.

The history behind this celebrated day is not clearly known. But if we had to guess it seems as if the day is here to remind us of the essentials in life. The essentials being—family, friends, food and of course, wine. 

The list of health benefits for drinking wine is endless. And organic wine yields an even better choice for your health and the environment. For centuries, people have enjoyed a commonality in pouring a glass of wine to enjoy. It breaks down barriers, celebrates triumphs and is a necessary accompaniment to a fine meal. Not to mention a wonderful component to a simple menu as well. 

Villa Graziella artisan crafted wines made with organic grapes are an affordable and accessible wine to enjoy on this special day. 

So whether it be red or white wine, or even a pink, be sure to raise your glass and proclaim salute!

You say Rosé, I say Rosato!

Morgan Shepard

The French call it rosé, in Italy it’s called Rosato. The “pink season” of wines kicks off this weekend with the Memorial Day holiday as family & friends gather in anticipation of summer. This season’s trend is all about  “drink pink”.  

Villa Graziella Toscano IGT Rosato is not your typical pink wine. Medium-bodied and refreshingly dry, it is a perfect rosé to celebrate the holiday & the grilling season with barbecued favorites. 


Balanced & sturdy, our 2016 Rosato is made from organically farmed Sangiovese Piccolo grapes enhanced with Montepulciano grapes from Italy. Certified organic, our vineyard is free of chemical insecticides or synthetic fertilizers. Instead, biodiversity is used by growing crops in & around the grape vines to attract beneficial insects. Free of chemical residue while regulating the soil for a wine that is clean & delicious. 

Salsasso method 

Pink wines don’t all herald from the same region or grapes. Villa Graziella’s authentic Sangiovese rose is crafted using the Salsasso method.  Our talented wine maker, Luca Nesi removes juice from the fermenter.  This minimizes skin contact to soften the tannins while offering a beautiful deep strawberry shade with a firm, pleasant taste 

So, "Let us celebrate the occasion with wine & sweet words." — Plautus 

Tom Hyland on Biodynamic Wines

Morgan Shepard

Villa Graziella sits down with respected author &  wine educator Tom Hyland as he breaks down the concept of biodynamic wines. Be sure to watch to learn about this hot new trend that in fact has been around for ages.

Tom Hyland: Chef & Winemaker Stories

Morgan Shepard

Villa Graziella sits down with talented journalist & wine expert Tom Hyland who penned the book “The Wines and Foods of Piemonte” which features interviews with the region’s leading winemakers and chefs. Click here to understand Tom’s insight into Italy’s famed Piemonte region and its wineries and food producers. 

A Day for Everyone to Celebrate the Earth

Morgan Shepard

Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influence of each.
— Henry David Thoreau

Once a year time stands still and we are all called upon to honor this planet of ours—Earth. 

Earth Day, celebrated on April 22,  is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate Mother Nature and all that she does for us. Earth Day got its beginnings in the 1970s thanks to its founder Gaylord Nelson. Then a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, Nelson tirelessly fought to push for the rights of the environment and rallied the American people for environmental protection.

His passion pursued and Earth Day was born on April 22, 1970.

The reasoning behind this was simple but profound. Nelson decided to have citizens ask some tough and noteworthy questions—”What are the particular pollution problems in your area? What needs to be done to alleviate them? How do you make the public aware?"

And thus, Earth Day manifested itself into a life changing experience for society as a whole. Communities stretched far and wide across this country began to ask these questions.

Throughout the decades, Earth Day has transformed the public’s perceptions of how to protect the environment that we live in. Grassroots efforts have led to numerous changes that now protect Mother Nature.

Fast forward to Earth Day 2017—this year is set to be even bigger than ever. According to the Earth Day Network “more than 1 billion people now participate in Earth Day activities each year making it the largest civic observance in the world.” A great reminder that the Earth is for everyone! 

From everyone here at Villa Graziella artisan crafted wines made with organic grapes & Villa Gabriella organic foods we hope you have an earth-filled day on April22nd. We invite you to consider celebrating our earth in your own personal way, for we believe individual activity contributes to the greater good for all of us!

Tom Hyland on the Foods of Piemonte

Morgan Shepard

Villa Graziella enjoys a merenda with wine lecturer & writer Tom Hyland to discover the local foods of the beloved Piemonte region of Italy. Known for their distinct chocolate, cheeses, meats, pasta dishes and more, check out to discover these local treasures!

Tom Hyland on Piemontesi Wines

Morgan Shepard

Villa Graziella shares a glass of wine with author & wine educator Tom Hyland to gain a deeper understanding of the delicate and fruitful findings of the wines of Piemontesi. Watch to learn more about the region’s treasured wines!

Tom Hyland: Why Piemonte?

Morgan Shepard

Villa Graziella sits down with wine expert Tom Hyland to discover Italy’s hidden gem—the Piemonte region. Regarded for its breathtaking views of the vineyards amidst the backdrop of the Alps, Piemonte is also grounded in authentic winemaking. Be sure to watch and discover why!

World of Pinot Noir 2017

Morgan Shepard

Winemakers, experts & novices alike, recently gathered to celebrate the noble & unique Pinot Noir grape at the 17th edition of The World of Pinot Noir along California’s central coast.

Old & new world varietals from Australia, Chile, France, Italy, New Zealand, Spain & the U.S. were shared over discussions on vintage, terroir & winemaking styles. The Burgundy lunch, rosé brunch, sparkling wine seminar, cheese, pâté & Pinot Noir pairing classes were all thoroughly enjoyed. Not to be missed was the annual Grand Tasting Pinot Noir by the Sea & Silent Auction supporting California oenology education including the Michael Bonaccorsi Foundation.

Where to Buy Tom Hyland's Book

Morgan Shepard

Be sure to add this to your reading list! Wine author & educator, Tom Hyland’s new book “The Wines and Foods of Piemonte” is a wonderful resource to discover the wonderful wine and food of Italy's Piedmont region. Watch now and find out where to pick up your copy. Grazie!

Tom Hyland: Piemonte's Ambassador

Morgan Shepard

Villa Graziella sits down with author & journalist Tom Hyland to congratulate him as Piemonte’s Ambassador for the region’s wine. Piemonte wine prides itself from the region of Piedmont—located at the base of the Alps in northern Italy, it is best known for the sparkling Asti, noble Barbera, Barolo, Barbaresco varietals & delicious Gavi white wine. Want to learn more

Tom Hyland on Organic Wines

Morgan Shepard

Want to know how organic wine differs from the “other” stuff? Esteemed wine educator & writer Tom Hyland, sits down with Villa Graziella artisan crafted wines made with organic grapes, to discuss his findings! Tom’s wisdom offers valuable insight into the process of organic winemaking. Be sure to check it out! 

Sriracha-Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

Morgan Shepard

Are you getting ready for the big game and looking for a healthier alternative to some game day bites? These Sriracha-Buffalo Cauliflower Bites are a delicious meat alternative that is sure to make a touchdown this Sunday! High in Vitamin C, these cauliflower bites are a great healthy alternative to Buffalo wings. Serve as an appetizer with carrot sticks and your favorite ranch dressing. Visit Villa Gabriella for the full recipe

What to enjoy with your sriracha cauliflower bites? Villa Graziella Toscano IGT Trebbiano white wine fruit flavors pair with spicy sriracha heat for a perfect combination. 

Time To Toast

Morgan Shepard

This holiday season consider something different from your usual cellar picks. Leave your comfort zone when choosing wine as a gift, for a family gathering or casual get together. Remember it does not need to be expensive to be delicious. Be thoughtful; understand your guest or recipient’s taste preferences or favorite cuisine. Here are three wines worth giving and serving. 

For the white (i.e. Chardonnay) wine drinker, try Viognier. Originally a French grape varietal, it is now grown from California to Virginia to Argentina. Voignier is well suited to festive foods; crab legs, shrimp cocktail, lobster tail also as a single sipper. 

For the lover of luxury but with a thin wallet, think sparkling Italian Prosecco. Bright, clean and crisp, made from Glera grapes with secondary fermentation. Unlike bubbly from the designated French Champagne region and in bottle secondary fermentation, Prosecco’s fermentation is in large steel tanks. Effervescent and lighter tasting than French Champagne, it pairs perfectly with smoked salmon appetizers or on its’ own for midnight toasting.   

For the unconventional, “Orange” wine.  Made in California, Italy and the former Yugoslavian Republic now Slovenia. Orange wines are the result of skin fermented white grapes for an extended period; 2 weeks to 9 months. Butterscotch colored to bright copper, usually full bodied with a unique aroma and cider like vibrancy, orange wines are good “go-between” wines, lighter than red, fuller bodied than white. Rich holiday dishes like rack of lamb, beef tenderloin and smoked pork loin marry well with the acidic & tannic structure of orange wines.

Need help choosing? Consult your local wine merchant for their recommendations.


Review from Tom Hyland

Morgan Shepard

Wine educator and accomplished author, Tom Hyland, was kind enough to taste and write about our Villa Graziella Riserva and Rosso Toscano. Stay tuned for an upcoming conversation with Tom regarding wines and food of Piomonte and his latest book. Read the full review here

Chicken & Bruschetta Pasta

Morgan Shepard


We’re celebrating International Pasta Day with our healthy & delicious chicken pasta using both our Villa Gabriella Organic organic, extra virgin olive oil & organic 8 year aged balsamic vinegar di Modena. We’re enjoying it with our Villa Graziella artisan crafted Rosso Toscano IGT red wine, made with organic grapes. Bright fruity notes pair perfectly with zesty Roma tomatoes & protein rich chicken breast. Buon appetito! Visit Villa Gabriella for the full recipe

Wines: Drink to Your Health

Morgan Shepard

The desire to eat and drink healthily continues to gain momentum. This includes interest in natural, organic, and biodynamic wines. But how is one different from the other? Read our latest article in Chicago Woman Magazine here

Summertime Wine & Food Pairing

Morgan Shepard

Summertime dishes can vary in taste and texture, but whether you're eating fried chicken or grilled salmon, there's a wine that pairs perfectly with it. Check out our latest article for Chicago Woman Magazine here

National Pizza Month

Morgan Shepard

Deep dish, thin crust, pan, stuffed or square, did you know pizza did not originate from Naples as the legend goes? Historic records from the town of Gaeta, in Lazio Italy indicate the earliest mention of pizza appeared in a rental agreement in AD 997. The Dark Ages document stated tenants were to include 12 pizzas as part of their rent payment on both Christmas & Easter for land where a mill was built.   

What to enjoy with your pizza? Like a marriage made in heaven, pizza & wine are the perfect match! Villa Graziella artisan crafted wine made with organic grapes 2015 Rosso Toscano bright acidity marries well with the rich cheese & ripe tomato sauce for a delicious dinner!

Tried, Tasted & True! At Villa Gabriella Organic our team tries & tastes every recipe we feature. While we love to share our family recipes & those of talented home cooks & chefs, sometimes we adapt them so they are even easier to make. As with our products, our goal is for you to have a healthy & delicious experience using Villa Gabriella recipes. So try them out in your kitchen, feel free to tweak them & please tell us what you think.

We welcome your comments & feedback!