A recent visit to Da Vinci – the Italian restaurant down on Fleet Street gave me the perfect opportunity to do a Swindon in 50 Drinks post on Italian beer. Well two of them anyway. Peroni and Moretti.

Italian beer - Peroni and Moretti

Peroni Nastro Azzuro

Peroni - Italian beer

From the Peroni official website we learn that the Peroni family conceived this beer in 1963. A beer to embody Italian values of quality and craftsmanship. They describe the beer as being brewed through three generations of master brewers. According to them: ‘Peroni Nastro Azzurro uses only the finest ingredients, including our exclusive Nostrano dell’Isola maize.’

Thus, they say, they deliver a beer that is crisp and refreshing with a delicate balance of bitterness, citrus and spicy aromas with a fast, clean finish. I have no sense of smell so can’t comment on the aroma part.


The maize used by Peroni they obtain from the small town of Bergamo in northern Italy. The town produces the maize only for Peroni.

Lying in the Lombardy region is a fertile plain, between the rivers of Adda and Brembo, known by the locals as the ‘island earth’. Here are perfect conditions for growing maize. An absence of frost, the cilmate and the soil – irrigated by melted snow from the Alps – creates this ideal environment.

The Peroni Brewery

To learn about the Peroni Brewery visit Beer and Brewing.Com They say: ‘Peroni Brewery, founded as the Birra Peroni Brewery in 1846 by the Peroni family in Vigevano, Italy. In 1864 Giovanni Peroni moved the brewery to Rome, where it soon began to prosper. The first advertising for Peroni beer appeared in 1910 and helped popularize the brand …

… The second largest brand is Nastro Azzurro, meaning “Blue Ribbon” in Italian. Nastro Azzuro is a premium lager at 5.1% ABV launched in 1963. 

Birra Moretti

Italian beer - birra Moretti

First brewed in 1859, this beer is made with a blend of quality ingredients and a barely-changed brewing process. According to the Beers of Europe website what you can expect from this beer is a delicate citrus hop base and a top note of wholemeal bread. All I know is that it’s a tasty and refreshing 4.6%.

Heineken bought the company in 1996. Nothing is what it seems eh?

As for the label on the bottle: It appears that, in 1942, Moretti’s nephew noticed a dapper chap in a restaurant in Udine. He asked if he could take the man’s picture. The diner said ‘yes’ in exchange for another beer. From that day to this he adorns every bottle of Moretti beer.

The Da Vinci Restaurant and Pizzeria

These Swindon in 50 drinks posts are more about the drink than the venue. But I have to say, I have a soft spot for this place. The food is good and good value. The staff are friendly. And – you get a tablecloth and linen napkin. A rare treat these days. If you’ve not been then give them a try.

Here’s their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/millaci0934/

Da Vinci in Swindon
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