Region: Lazio

The EST! EST!! EST!!! Legend In the year 1111 Henry V of England happened to go through Montefiascone on his way to Rome where he was to be crowned by the Pope. The king's retinue was travelling with him and Johann Defugger, a man particularly fond of wine, belonged to that party, too. According to the legend this remarkable character, in order to satisfy his passion, had sent ahead his servant Martin, whose task was to look for the best wines all along the route to Rome. Every time he would find a noteworthy wine the servant was supposed to mark the place by the word EST which meant "There is good wine here" in the code they had agreed upon. When Martin arrived in Montefiascone he tasted such a good wine that he did not just write the usual EST on the inn's door but EST! EST!! EST!!! to underline its superior quality. For this reason the nobleman Defuc extended his stay in Montefiascone and drank so much wine that he died of it. He was buried in the St Flavian Church wherein you can still see his tomb. According to his will he bestowed 24,000 crowns to the town to show his gratitude, requiring that, on every anniversary of his death, a little cask of the exquisite wine be poured on his tomb. Engraved on his grey tufa stone slab you can still read the words: " For too much EST! Here lies the body of my master John Deuc" The citizens of Montefiascone, who have great fancy, took this name for their own and turned it into Defuk and in order to commemorate him, every year in the first half of August, during the "Wine Festival", a historical pageant with dames and chevaliers in costumes represents the exploits of the nobleman Defuk, from his arrival in town to his death for drinking in excess.

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