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24-hour red wine fountain opens in Italy

Visitors to a town in Italy's Abruzzo region can drink red wine from a free fountain set up by a local winery...

The Dora Sarchese winery said on its Facebook page that it had installed the free, 24-hour red wine fountain in the commune of Caldari di Ortona.

Anybody can drink from the wine fountain, but it is primarily to quench the thirst of those taking the Cammino di San Tommaso pilgrimage.

Red wine is currently available 24 hours-a-day at the ‘fontana del vino’ and it works like a push-button drinking fountain.

Photos on the winery’s Facebook page show how staff filled a barrel of red wine that then flows up into the fountain tap.

Caldari di Ortona sits in central Italy’s Abruzzo region, which is home of Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Colline Teramane DOCG.

Dora Sarchese did not name the style of wine feeding the fountain.

Thousands of people do the Cammino di San Tommaso pilgrimage between Rome and Ortona every year.

It’s not the first public wine fountain in Italy.

Venice has had a fountain in St Mark’s Square for its annual carnival.

And it appears that there’s a history of wine fountains in Europe.

Tudor England’s King Henry VIII  and France’s King Francis I had a wine fountain for courtiers to enjoy during their meeting  in 1520, according to the UK’s Royal Collection Trust.

A painting of that meeting depicts some court-goers slumped by the fountain’s base.

In Abruzzo, Dora Sarchese said its free red wine fountain was not for people to get drunk, but was a gesture to the town.

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