A wine tour in Italy is always an amazing experience.
Everywhere you go you find history, culture, delicious food, stunning views and nice people.
Sperlonga, an easy ride from Rome, is one of these tiny places that has all that.
In addition to beautiful beaches and crystal clear water.
But there are three factors that made the fortune of Sperlonga town so long ago.
Wiliam Murray (1926-2005), an american writer of mystery novels who worked at The New Yorker for 30 years, probably visited Sperlonga during the 50s, when the people here still didn’t know that in few years tourism would have exploded.
In his book “The Last Italian” he tells us that:
“An amateur historian named Monsignor Nicola Ferraro speculated in a treatise he wrote in 1937 that Sperlonga owed its existence to three basic facts.
The first, and perhaps most important of these, was the manufacture of a celebrated local white wine the Romans called Cecubo, much favored by the legions tramping back and forth between the capital and the Emperor Tiberius’ sumptuous villa.
The second fact was the presence of this villa itself, with its many outlying buildings, all within easy reach of the grotto, which had been known to the ancient Greeks.
The third and most enduring fact was the opening of the Via Flacca, named after the Roman official, Lucio Valerio Flacco, who built it during the emperor’s reign. Traces of this road are still visible. It was about twelve feet wide and skirted the coast between Terracina and Gaeta, passing above both the Emperor’s villa and the cave”.
So the Cecubo wine, the building of great villas by the roman aristocratic people and Emperors and the birth of the via Flacca in 184 B.C. were the three basic facts that made the fortune of Sperlonga belonging to Murray.
You can still taste the delicious Cecubo wine in one of the wineries near Sperlonga, visit the Tiberius’Villa and walk on the ancient via Flacca.