The Veneto and Friuli-Venezia Giulia Feature
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The Rise of Grappa
The Veneto and neighboring Friuli-Venezia Giulia produce Italy's most popular brandy, grappa, distilled from the skins, seeds, and stems of many types of grapes left over after wine making. Commercial production began in Bassano del Grappa in the 18th century, and for many years it was consider a "rough" drink—potent, harsh going down, and inexpensive.
In the 1970s more-refined grappas, from single-grape varieties or selected blends, began to appear, and what had been essentially a by-product of wine production was elevated to a higher status. There are now several major producers in the region, along with countless small enterprises and Italians, especially in the northeast, finish off even the most elegant meal with a glass of carefully selected grappa.
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