MCR: The Italian Who Brought Grapes to Germany

I set out on a journey for one year away from the United States April 1, 2011. I traveled21742998_335702440221590_3217754913356266826_n.jpg between Europe, Colombia, Brasil and the Dominican Republic. During those twelve months, Sorsi e Morsi, a cozy woody wine bar in the Prenzlauer Berg neighbourhood of Berlin was my favorite watering hole. Trust me, I hit more than a few that year. Sorsi e Morsi carries only Italian wine, quality wine for sure but without the exorbitant price that will vanquish your supply of euros. But it’s the owner, originally from Italy, Johnny Petrongolo who makes this wine bar sparkle like an exquisitely balanced prosecco.

21740127_335702210221613_6166264396376553914_nI spent two months wandering about in Berlin. The city is a suction cup for artistic creativity and a jazz lover’s dream. While I found many delights within Berlin’s borders, I have to also admit I did not always receive the warmest reception from its inhabitants. I’d say I parred some and bogeyed a few others. I stumbled onto Sorsi e Morsi one night after a day of walking close to twenty miles. The bar sits on an inclined side street. Johnny made Sorsi e Morsi feel like a good place for a traveler to relax and indulge his passion for wine. He’s an energetic fella with an engaging personality and one helluva memory. He always seemed to remember which glasses I liked and subsequently recommended other bottles along those lines. Sorsi e Morsi is a place where locals congregate. Johnny greets and chats up every patron who comes through the door, and again, rarely do they ask for a drink, a glass of desirable wine seems to quickly find its way into their hand shortly after entrance.

When I left Berlin at the end of October 2011, I had a few glasses of wine at Sorsi e Morsi late at night before catching a few hours of sleep and training to Budapest. Just before leaving Johnny placed two of my favorite bottles in front of me along with the message, “You’re one of my best.” I think I had to translate that – I promised myself one day I would return to Sorsi e Morsi and say hi to Johnny. Cheers to keeping promises.