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If I had a pound for every time I’m asked the question, “Being a food writer, do you get to go out for lovely dinners?” I’d be a wealthy woman, indeed.

I’d suggest Food Writer as a possible career for anyone who likes to be thoroughly spoilt, lesser only to the professions of motoring journalist or the elusive wristwatch columnist sectors of the petulant spoiled brats of the scribing world.

So when I was asked to join some of my fellow professionals for a meal at Divino Enoteca I was delighted.

Being an only child I’ve been rather indulged in my time, my parents took me out from a very young age to fabulous restaurants, so going for a splendid dinner (with wine pairings!) I inherently feel is no less than my due.

Divino Enoteca is beautiful! You descend the stairs on Merchant Street, in the heart of the old town, to elegant fabulousness. I’m ashamed to say I hadn’t been before, and considering they have a space age range of wine tasting machines it really ought to be my Mother Ship. Here you can pop a pre-paid card into these machines and try a small measure or glass of a wide range of wines. Some charge £50 for a few sips, or a mouthful if you’re me. These amazing contraptions can hold a bottle of wine in a fresh state for five years. It could be a good thing I’m a new client for all concerned.

One of the reasons I was so excited about the evening was to meet Somelier Silvio Praino, who I had heard much about. Silvio is what we call, in the trade, a character. A slimmed down David Suchet might play him in a movie. What Silvio doesn’t know about Italian wine, ain’t worth learning.

We were treated to a four course tasting menu with wine pairings from Piedmont region. Good Lord, it was an education.

When you ask Silvio about wine, an encyclopedia opens up with the vast knowledge of his noddle. His wife must be a happy woman.

I did ask what I considered to be an important question: before Prosecco became popular, where did all the Prosecco go? It turns out that when Prosecco hit the market Italy simply expanded the area you could make Prosecco in.

You have to hand it to the Italians, they don’t mess about.

Divino Enoteca
5 Merchant Street
EH1 2QD
0131 225 1770

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