When I traveled home to Missouri from Italy two Christmases ago, I was hanging out with my mom in her apartment, who asked me if I wanted some wine. "Of course!" I answered, because of course I did. We drink socially quite a bit, especially around the holidays. My mom handed me a personal-sized, plastic, screw-top bottle of Sutterhome. I didn't bat an eye. I like all wine, I told myself. I poured the wine from the miniature bottle into my wine glass (because I had standards that day and guess I chose not to drink it straight from the tiny plastic bottle), and immediately upon tasting, screwed up my face and just said, "No."
I don't mind being a snob about some food things. I think all frosting should be homemade. I believe you should taste all food before you salt or season it. But give me a bag of Doritos and I'll finish it off. I think Cool Whip is an exception to the frosting rule. I black out upon being given a box of Thin Mints. So I never imagined that I would turn up my nose at something with alcoholic content. I could not drink this Sutterhome — could not bring myself to do it. Italy had ruined me for wine. For the better, clearly.
I've been to my fair share of wineries in my time in Italy so far. At first, I only ventured to the ones that everyone went to — the safe ones, with the English-speaking owners and the Facebook pages and the large selection of dessert wines. But the more I ventured out, with a lot of help from my ride-or-die wino friends, the more I realized that there was so much out there. Like, so much good wine that I was not drinking was out there. Is still out there. And really, someone at every winery spoke English. So what was I all worried about? Check out these fantastic Veneto wineries — there are 11 on this list, and they're all fantastic, because, after all, they all serve Italian wine. And there are no plastic bottles in sight.