A sight for sore eyes? An oasis? The fabled fountain of youth? This might not solve all of life’s problems, but it will change yours once you’ve learned about it. There’s a free wine fountain you need to visit in Italy, and we mean now. Make the pilgrimage, book the flight and fill your bottle! If you can’t go today, add it to your travel journal’s future bucket list!

Check out This FREE Wine Fountain you Need to Visit in Italy

Found in Ortono, Abruzzo Italy this fountain of dreams is like something out of a storybook fairytale. (Well, one of ours anyways.) It’s the brainchild of a private winemaker and a religious pilgrimage sponsor. It’s a stop on the famous Christian pilgrimage, the ‘cammino di san tommaso’. And this is one stop you’re going to want to take.

After travelling on foot, and the whole pilgrimage is, I’m sure travellers would be relieved to find this hidden gem. Free wine fountains are not news though it seems, similar ones can be found throughout history in parts of Europe. This one just happens to exist in a time and place that you can actually visit.

Europeans, Italians in particular have a very deep cultural, emotional and historical relationship with wine. It predates a lot of what we know about history, and is intrinsically entwined with human’s relationship with agriculture and society. Today, and for as long as anyone can remember, wine has been at the table for as long as families have.

To imagine something like this existing in a small Italian town really isn’t terribly bizarre. A history of wine fountains throughout europe takes us to modern day Rome, parts of Spain and the annals of medieval history. It has been said that rulers have used such lavish and incredible wine delivery services to wow their royalty courtiers.

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Free Wine?

Yes, indeed it is. And no, not to a select few, or as a part of a resort package, with the purchase of something else or with someone’s blessing. This wine fountain is absolutely free. Found within the confines of a beautifully constructed in a walk-in cut out, gigantic wine barrell with an almost transparent spacing between the slats, it can almost evoke the feeling of being in a confessional. Perhaps this was an intentional part of its design from the Dora Sarchese Vineyards who made the fountain possible.

You won’t find this fountain nestled on some rich, giving philanthropist’s private property – it’s actually part of the town. Dora Sarchese vineyard foot the bill, as well as supplying the precious vino. None if it comes down on the taxpayer, making that deal all the much sweeter. The general public, visitors and pilgrims are all welcome to visit the pride of the town. Besides of course, its lush vineyards and unbelievable historical value.

Tell me more…

The fountain is intended to flow on a regular basis, where locals and visitors can experience the regionally produced grapes of their beloved and charitable vineyard. As a matter of fact, the fountain is planned to continuously flow with wine. Yes, bring the biggest bottle, jug or hose you can because this one’s going to take the whole neighborhood. Just imagine having one of these for your next wine & cheese shindig.

Photo from Dora Sarchese

Now, you’ll have to bring your own glass and remember, this one’s for the town. As a token of their appreciation for the people of their town, and the history associated with the route. So before you start looking at listings in Ortona, just remember to show respect for why it’s there. Celebrate the national love for wine and what it means to the people of Ortona, Abruzzo and Italy as a whole.  

When the right people come together, magic happens. Much like it did with this fountain, it took a few willing participants to really woo the world as it were. Creating something like this has a lot of implications, as well as important considerations on the sides of both the vineyard and the organization that supports the pilgrimage. It has the potential to serve thousands of people per year, which are the numbers the pilgrimage can draw. It’s the story of a small town, and its small contribution to the world as a whole.

As such, the design and nature of this free wine fountain is that by its sheer existence and placement, pays homage to the historical significance of the trail where it rests. The designers intentionally placed in right on the historical path taken by walking pilgrims, to acknowledge directly its purpose. The religious significance of wine, especially in Roman Catholicism is highly auspicious as you could have guessed.

For the Love of Wine

There are plenty of reasons to celebrate wine, and this one is as a cultural touchstone and the pride of the people of Ortona. Next time you’re thinking about how to make the world a better place, think about Dora Sarchese Vineyards and their enduring devotion to the people who call Ortona their home.

While they didn’t specify which of their wines inhabits the amazing fountain, it is tended to on a daily basis by the staff, who use barrels to feed the fountain which delivers the red wine at the press of a button. If you’re conjuring up images of a coffee pod machine but for wine, so am I.

Before you take a sledgehammer to your kitchen sink, remember that a concept as unique as this isn’t just some shabby DIY work. If you’re considering visiting the region, take the chance to appreciate the artistry and intent behind this awe inspiring concept. It is as much a token of charitability and faith as it is a functional piece of art.

So, if you’re not going to install a wine fountain in your own kitchen (or backyard) you’ll have to grab a plane ticket to Ortona and check it out for yourself. Some may draw their own conclusions, but one must stop to really give this fountain the adoration it deserves.   

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