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Italians celebrate with special-edition grappa

Italy’s victorious footballers are being encouraged to have one more for the road by grappa producer Distilleria Bottega.

The Treviso-based company has decided to treat each of the squad members – plus head coach Marcello Lippi – to a special bottle of grappa made from grapes produced from all over Italy

And the hand-blown bottle contains an extra patriotic flourish in the form of an Italian flag immersed in the liquor.

The special grappa includes nine grape varieties from around the country: Prosecco, Nebbiolo and Tocai Friulano from the north, Sangiovese, Montepulciano d’Abruzzo and Verdicchio from the centre, and Nero d’Avola, Aglianico and Primitivo di Manduria from the south.

Only 24 bottles are being produced – one each for the players and Lippi – with left back Fabio Grosso picking up a giant three-litre bottle as Bottega’s player of the tournament.

‘Grosso is the perfect example of the average Italian: a hard worker who is capable of attaining excellence on special occasions,’ said the company.

No description was offered of Marco Materazzi, whose insults provoked French captain Zinedine Zidane into his now infamous headbutt.

Experts at Bottega prepared a top-secret prototype bottle before the final, keeping it under wraps so as not to bring the team bad luck. The company has not revealed whether an extra bottle will now be sent to Zidane, whose sending-off robbed France of their main penalty taker.

Written by Richard Woodard

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