• Understanding Sicilian Wines

    Understanding Sicilian Wines

    Sicily, the largest island in the Mediterranean, is not only known for its rich history and stunning landscapes but also for its vibrant and diverse wine culture. The Controlled Designation of Origin (DOC) for Sicilian wines was established on 22nd November 2011. Wine Regions of Sicily Sicily’s main wine regions can be broadly divided into…

  • Bartolomeo Lorenzi Rosso Veronese 2021

    Bartolomeo Lorenzi Rosso Veronese 2021

    From the prestigious Amarone specialist cooperative, Cantina di Negrar, celebrated as Italy’s 2019 Winery of the Year, comes the Bartolomeo Lorenzi Rosso Veronese 2021. Made by winemaker Daniele Accordini, this wine elegantly merges grapes from Valpolicella’s Classico region with air-dried Corvina, a hallmark of top-tier Amarone. While the light aroma isn’t the main focal point,…

  • Borsa Vini Italiani

    Borsa Vini Italiani

    I had the pleasure of attending the Borsa Vini Italiani, a trade event hosted by the Italian Trade Commission, at the Royal Horticultural Halls in London on 4th June 2024. The event featured 41 exhibitors showcasing 197 wines from 13 regions including Piedmont, Lombardy, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Veneto, Tuscany, Marche, Abruzzo, Campania, Apulia, Calabria, Sicily, Sardinia…

  • Understanding Italian Wines

    Understanding Italian Wines

    Italy’s wine is an intricate tapestry woven from centuries of tradition, regional diversity and a large number of grape varieties. Each of Italy’s 20 regions offers a unique contribution to the country’s vast and varied wine portfolio: In 2022, Italy was the world’s largest wine producer accounting for nearly one-fifth of the global wine supply….

  • A Mano New Vintages

    A Mano New Vintages

    I first came across A Mano wines at the Liberty Wines trade and press tasting in January 2024. A Mano wines are produced by winemaker Mark Shannon, originally from California and marketing expert Elvezia Sbalchiero. These wines are made from old grape vines, aged between 70 and 100 years, in Puglia. The grapes are hand-harvested…

  • Italy in a Wineglass

    Italy in a Wineglass

    Italy in a Wineglass, by Mark Millon, offers readers the rich tapestry of Italy’s history through the lens of its winemaking tradition. Millon, with his impressive tenure of over forty years as a wine writer, not only brings a wealth of knowledge to his writing but also a passionate reverence for his subject. His previous…

  • Morrisons Montepulciano d’Abruzzo

    Morrisons Montepulciano d’Abruzzo

    My wife recently pointed out an article in the Metro that praised Morrisons Villa Verde Montepulciano d’Abruzzo 2022 wine as providing the quality of a wine that could be double or even two and a half times its modest price of £6. This piqued my curiosity, particularly because I’ve repurchased a different, slightly pricier, £7.75,…

  • La Gioiosa et Amorosa Rosea NV

    La Gioiosa et Amorosa Rosea NV

    La Gioiosa et Amorosa Rosea NV was a great surprise gift at a recent dinner party, which is how I came to try this different wine. Produced by La Gioiosa, a prominent name in Italian wine known particularly for its Prosecco, this rosé variant offers a twist on the traditional. Helmed by winemaker Valerio Fuson,…

  • Italian Whites for Food

    Italian Whites for Food

    Fiona Beckett in The Guardian Newspaper discusses how Italian wines, particularly white wines, are specifically crafted to complement food. It highlights that Italian wines often lack overt fruit flavours or excessive oakiness, maintaining lower alcohol levels to enhance rather than overwhelm simple, seasonally focused dishes. The article notes the appeal of Italian whites due to…

  • Italian Wine Exports – Downturn in Both Volume and Value

    Italian Wine Exports – Downturn in Both Volume and Value

    European Supermarket Magazine is reporting that in 2023, Italian wine exports experienced a downturn in both volume and value across its five principal export markets, decreasing by 4.4% and 7.3% respectively, amounting to €4.45 billion. This decline was particularly marked in the United States, Canada, Japan and the UK, with only Germany witnessing a 7%…

  • Duca di Sasseta Primitivo IGT

    Duca di Sasseta Primitivo IGT

    This 2022 vintage wine was part of the Lidl Italian and Iberian Wine Tours tasting when it was one of my favourites. I have since purchased it and it’s as good as I remembered and I now know it also works great with (Italian) food. It has also gained a respectable 4.0 score on Vivino….

  • Lidl Italian and Iberian Wine Tours

    Lidl Italian and Iberian Wine Tours

    In February 2024, I attended a Lidl wine tasting which showcased wines planned to be introduced during the Italian and Iberian wine tours in February and March 2024, respectively. Additionally, a selection of wines from Lidl’s existing collection was also being shown. Wine tours at Lidl are the wines displayed in wooden crates, each accompanied…

  • Italian Wine Tasting and Masterclass

    Italian Wine Tasting and Masterclass

    On the 29th of January, I had the pleasure of attending an event celebrating and promoting the 10th anniversary of The Essential Guide to Italian Wine, at Brown’s Hotel in London. A highlight of this tasting was the presence of one of Italy’s most well-known wine connoisseurs, Daniele Cernilli, also known as DoctorWine. The event…

  • Winetraders Italian Portfolio Tasting 2024

    Winetraders Italian Portfolio Tasting 2024

    On 29 January 2024, Winetraders hosted their Italian Portfolio Tasting in London. Winetraders is an importer, retailer and distributor specialising in single estate wines with their range spanning across Italy, Spain, Germany, Australia and South America. What sets Winetraders apart is their exceptionally rigorous selection process, a meticulous approach ensuring that each wine in their…

  • Valdo Prosecco DOC Extra Dry

    Valdo Prosecco DOC Extra Dry

    Despite not holding the more prestigious DOCG designation, this wine makes a subtle statement by mentioning Valdobbiadene, it’s origin, on its label — usually only done for Prosecco of the DOCG category. Contrary to what one might expect, ‘Extra Dry’ in this context always refers to a subtly sweet flavour profile. Valdo Prosecco DOC Extra…

  • Italy Launches Campaign to Educate Britons on Prosecco Label

    Italy Launches Campaign to Educate Britons on Prosecco Label

    Italy has initiated a campaign to educate Britons on the correct use of the term ‘Prosecco’. The Italian DOC Consortium launched an advertising campaign in London emphasising that Prosecco is a geographically protected label, reserved for sparkling wines produced in specific Italian regions. The campaign, displayed in over 80 locations in London, aims to reach…

  • Specially Selected Valpolicella Ripasso Superoire

    Specially Selected Valpolicella Ripasso Superoire

    The Specially Selected Valpolicella Ripasso Superiore from Aldi uses the traditional Ripasso technique for an added richness and depth, a characteristic feature of the process where the wine undergoes a second fermentation. It’s created predominantly from 75% Corvina, complemented by 20% Corvinone and 5% Rondinella. I tried the 2021 vintage. Olly Smith noted the 2019…

  • Understanding Valpolicella and Amarone

    Understanding Valpolicella and Amarone

    Valpolicella is a wine-producing region in Italy combining traditional techniques with the variable geography of the Verona province. Located between the Lessini Mountains and Lake Garda, Valpolicella’s landscape has a varying terrain – mountainous areas, hilly vineyards and fertile valley floors. In 2020, this region boasted a large €600 million turnover, with a significant 70%…

  • Amarone Calling

    Amarone Calling

    On 20th November 2023 I attended the ‘Amarone Calling’ tasting, a collaboration between the UK Sommelier Association and the Consorzio Tutela Vini Valpolicella, the Italian organisation dedicated to promoting and controlling the appellation of Valpolicella wines. The event focused on showcasing a range of Valpolicella and Amarone wines, offering a unique opportunity to explore these…

  • Produttori Primitivo di Manduria Riserva

    Produttori Primitivo di Manduria Riserva

    The 2019 vintage from Manduria’s Consorzio Produttori Vini showcases the deep-rooted history of the winery, founded in 1932. This year is proudly indicated on the label. This full-bodied wine, with its robust 14.5% alcohol content, is also suitable for vegans. The wine has been carefully aged in oak barrels for at least nine months, a…