Many a wine destination seduces travelers with the promise of free-flowing wine, but there is just one place that can claim to provide — quite literally — free and flowing red wine.
A fountain was inaugurated in central Italy last weekend but, instead of water, it flows with locally produced wine from the Dora Sarchese vineyard. While it's not the first fountain in Italy to offer wine — the historical fountains of Carosino (Taranto), San Floriano del Collio (Gorizia), and Marino (Rome) all open up their taps on special occasions — its creators describe it as the country's first "proper" wine fountain, because visitors have access to it all day every day. Best of all, it's completely free: You can just stroll up to the fountain and fill up your glass... or bottle.
The fountain is located in Caldari di Ortona, in Abruzzo, which lies along the Cammino di San Tommaso, a popular pilgrimage route. It took inspiration from a previous temporary wine fountain installed along the Camino de Santiago a few years ago. Perhaps with this holy association in mind, the vineyard notes that the fountain is not a place for "drunkards" or "louts." The new fountain, reports The Local, is a joint project of the vineyard and the nonprofit organization that maintains the pilgrimage route.
Just in case free alcohol fountains are your thing, the Black Sea resort town of Batumi in the Republic of Georgia (one of our hot travel destinations for 2016) has its own version. The Chacha Tower dispenses free flowing chacha, a potent Georgian moonshine, for 10 minutes every day at 7 p.m.
Funny to think that, in the U.S. some of the biggest proponents of public drinking fountains were temperance activists who believed access to fresh water would curb drinking.
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