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The Culture of Wine Part 1: Tasca d’Almerita

Did you know that Italy has more UNESCO World Heritage Sites than any other country in the world? All that art and nature… wonderful, right? But how can one little country afford to preserve and promote all that beauty? We all have to pitch in, that’s how! And the world of wine is doing its […]

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Vernaccia di San Gimignano, a Wine of Great History

It’s a year of anniversaries and celebrations: Vernaccia di San Gimignano was declared the first Italian DOC wine (Denominazione di Origine Controllata) in 1966, and thus turns 50 years ‘young’ this year. And here in Tuscany, the famed Chianti Classico of the Gallo Nero logo, is turning 300 (but that is the subject of another […]

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Arrivederci Verona!

And another Vinitaly – celebrating its 50th anniversary – comes to a close. By all accounts, this year was a success; producers big and small sold more wine to more markets than in the past. And that’s what it’s all about, right? Wrong! It’s about people, personalities, communication, sharing, spreading the passion for the grape, […]

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Women of Great Taste (and Style!)

Tuesday afternoon at the 50th Annual Vinitaly, a special homage to women winemakers at the Allegrini stand. The event featured 5 Italian women winemakers – Marilisa Allegrini, Raffaella Bologna (Braida), Francesca Planeta, Marina Cvetic, and Elena Walch – who welcomed two foreign visitors, women winemakers Andrea Wirsching of Germany and Xandra Falcò of Spain. A […]

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To Life, To Life, L’Chaim!

Today I participated in the Young to Young tasting for up-and-coming winemakers. It was a morning filled with emotions. Three heavy hitters: a Brunello di Montalcino, a Barolo and an Amarone. All this before noon! At this 50th annual Vinitaly, we’ve been talking about traditions and family and the land (more than the ‘terroir’). This […]

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La Famiglia, and the ABC’s of Winemaking

Here at this 50th annual Vinitaly, I am reflecting on family, traditions, values, and the land that is Italy. Let’s face it, this country is one of the world’s most industrial, and it has a unique model to propose: the small- and medium-sized business. There are 4.4 million companies in Italy with less than 250 […]

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A Presidential Inauguration

The 50th annual Vinitaly was inaugurated yesterday by none other than the President of Italy, Sergio Mattarella. Italians love all the pomp and circumstance of ribbon cutting and speeches. Yesterday, it was standing room only to hear what the President and Minister of Agriculture had to say. The people were fighting to get in: Sunday […]

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Now That’s a Vintage!

When they say it’s wonderful to age like a good wine, do they really contemplate a wine that is 50 years old? Today, the Donne del Vino – the Women of Wine – held a unique tasting: 10 women producers presented their wines. First, a recent vintage, something we all might buy at the wine […]

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Libiam, libiamo!

The people who came up with this idea of Opera Wine really were on to something. The combination of opera and wine isn’t incidental: there are divas in both worlds. Great personalities, dramatic stories, love affairs, betrayals, elaborate plans, soaring emotions, figures that are somehow larger than life, exquisite beauty… All the mixings of a great opera […]

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Awaiting Vinitaly…

The big 50th Annual Vinitaly is about to begin, and this is my beverage of choice these days: That great variety that is Italian wine – 440 varietals, more than 330 DOC wines, 74 DOCG – will be on display, and I am going to do my best to sip as many as I can […]