On Saturday, the world celebrates “Open That Bottle Night.” It is a time to finally pop the cork on a bottle you have been saving for a day so special that ... it hasn’t even arrived.

Many times, I’ve waited so long for the right occasion that the wine has passed its prime. Thanks to wine writers Dorothy J. Gaiter and John Brecher, who created OTBN in 2000, the last Saturday in February each year gives us reason to dust off that bottle and share it with someone special.

This year, we celebrated a bit early.

I had been planning for this day since 2004, when Wine Spectator awarded Domenico Clerico’s 2000 Percristina Barolo a perfect 100 points.

One of my first calls was to Sam Carfagna, who owns an Italian store in Columbus. I heard through the grapevine he was getting a case of the treasured juice. I drove to Columbus, plopped down $150 and secured a bottle.

For years I have banged my head against the walls of my cellar and contemplated when, where, and with whom I should share this liquid holy grail. A day so worthy may never come.

I did a little planning and thought it was best to share the special day with “The Barolo King of Akron,” John Bee, his wife Lee and my girlfriend Cathy. Bee and his wife import wine from Italy’s Piedmont region (where Barolo comes from) and have a second home there.

After decanting the wine for half an hour, Lee served homemade Tajarin noodles, a typical pasta of Piedmont, with a light cream sauce and pancetta. The color of the wine was beautiful brick red. We were in Barolo Heaven. Concentrated flavors of plum and dried raisin. Aromas of fresh picked tobacco leaves. A leathery finish you could time with a sun dial. It was a night to remember. I can still taste that finish.

What bottle will you open?

Send your wine tips and questions to philyourglass@gmail.com.

— Phil Masturzo