November 11 marks St. Martin’s Day and these are the weeks of “l’estate di San Martino” (St. Martin’s summer) – days when traditionally barrels are open for the first tastings of the new wine (vino novello) accompanied by chestnuts (castagne).
Therefore our Word of the Week is BOTTE, meaning barrel.
The plural is botti (barrels).
Here are a couple of sayings in Italian that use the word botte:
Avere la botte piena e la moglie ubriaca = have your cake and eat it too (literally, in Italian, this would translate as "have the barrel full and the wife drunk").
Nella botte piccola c’è il vino buono = good things come in small packages (literally, "the good wine is in the small barrel").
Beware though! Botte in Italian has another meaning too: it is the plural for punches, blows; beating up is riempire di botte.