Wine News - March 2005

The Chef's Corner

Let's continue with the monthly menu based on the rich culinary tradition of the Emilia Romagna region and proposed by the Scuola Alberghiera di Serramazzoni with Chef Davide Dalloco's five-course March menu.


  • Torta d’erbette borgotarese (Borgotaro-Style Herb Pie
    - Recipe)
  • Tortelli di patate e verdure (Stuffed Tortelli Pasta with Potatoes and Vegetables
    - Recipe)
  • Rollata di coniglio (Rabbit Roll
    - Recipe)
  • Tortino di spinaci e frutta secca (Spinach and Dried Fruit Tart
    - Recipe)
  • Squacquerone con marmellata di sambuco (Squacquerone Cheese with Elder-tree Jam)

 -

Company of the Month

The Company of the Month for March takes us to Romagna, inside Fattoria Paradiso (Paradise Farm), a historic property known in Italy as the 'Salotto culturale della Romagna' ('Romagna Cultural Salon').

Fattorioa Paradiso, Logo

Owned by the Pezzi family since the end of the 19th century, Fattoria Paradiso was known in ancient times as Castello Ugarte Lovatelli (Ugarte Lovatelli Castle). The property sits atop a low hill besides the medieval town of Bertinoro and, in addition to the main villa and winery, it includes an agriturismo, the Locanda Gradisca restaurant, eight conference rooms and three museums.

 -

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Welcome to Volume III, Number 03 of Wine News, the e-Letter from the WineCountry.IT network. (Would you rather see the e-Letter in your favorite browser? Use this link. Usa il link seguente se vuoi leggere le News in italiano).


Once in a lifetime opportunity!
Historic Italian Medieval village for sale in the heart of Italian Wine Country.
Could this be your dream come true?


As both the Midwest and good part of Italy are blanketed by unseasonal snow, in the part of Treviso province of Italy known as Alta Marca Travigiana, folks are getting ready, as they have done for the last ten years, to welcome Primavera, or springtime ahead of time. In fact, the "Primavera del Prosecco" ("Prosecco Springtime") opens the first of 15 wine exhibitions on March 5.

In California we are getting ready for our annual trip to Italy for Verona's Vinitaly, 2005. At the same time though, we are busy organizing in the San Francisco Bay Area, the inaugural Italian-Flavor Forum, the first in a series of educational eno-gastronomic events/marketplaces featuring Italian quality wines and regional specialties. The events are by invitation only and are dedicated to wine professionals, such as importers, wholesalers, retailers, restaurateurs and wine and food experts and critics.

As busy as we are, we have not forgotten the collectors of Italian wine labels, so we have posted over 50 new entries.

To read the full version of the articles below, just follow the links to the English versions published on WineCountry.IT, Italian Wine Hub and Italian Wine Labels. The Italian versions are published on Vino Italiano Club and ABC Vino and in a different section of WineCountry.IT,

The 'Dates to Remember' closes the e-Letter as usual. To see the full description of the events listed, please visit said section on WineCountry.IT.

Happy reading and, if you happen to be in Italy, between March and July, try to visit at least one of the wine exhibitions of the "Primavera del Prosecco".

Loris Scagliarini,



Tenth "Primavera del Prosecco", or "Prosecco's Springtime"


Primavera del ProseccoThe first of the 15 exhibitions dedicated to the Treviso area wines, as part opens on March 5th. It is part of the 10th Primavera del Prosecco, the annual event that takes place in the Conegliano and Valdobbiadene hills. From March to June, when the last of the exhibitions will close, the organizers expect around 300,000 visitors, between Italian and foreign tourists.

Latium Hosts Media Lunch To Introduce Wines and Food Products to Canada


Vigne del LazioThe Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Agriculture and the regional government of Latium, Italy will host a media lunch on Thursday, March 3, 2005 as part of its Canadian launch of Bacchus' Smile - a week long cultural and epicurean tour to showcase the wine, products and food from the Latium region of Italy.

Top 30 US Wine Companies for 2004


E&J Gallo Turning LeafFind the list of the top 30 wine companies in the United States by volume of wine sold in 2004.

The list does not include bulk wine, that is, wine processed by the company but sold under another company's brand.

Benvenuto Brunello 2005 – Pictures from Montalcino


WomenCristo Lepori, our man in Italy, returned from Benvenuto Brunello, or "Welcome Brunello", the annual presentation of the Brunello di Montalcino vintage held for the press by the Consorzio del Brunello di Montalcino with pictures and a point of view.

Wine May Protect Women's Hearts


Karolinska InstituteScientists studied the effect of alcohol consumption on 102 women under the age of 75 who had survived either a heart attack or surgery for blocked arteries.

They found that those who drank small amounts of wine daily for one year had the healthiest heart beat rhythm. On the other hand, drinking beer or spirits did not seem to have the same effect, the Karolinska Institute team told the Heart Journal.

Italian Liqueur Maker to Taste a New Market


DiSaronnoItalian drink maker Illva Saronno Holding, which makes the Disaronno and Talea brand liqueurs, has agreed to buy 33 percent of Chinese state-owned wine supplier Changyu Group Co. Ltd. China's biggest vintner and a leading wine producer for almost 100 years, Changyu is a listed nationally-owned company with assets of 1.47 billion yuan (about $177 million, or €136 million – see up-to-date values in other currencies) in Yantai, a city in eastern China's Shangdong Province. According to Illva Disaronno web site, its liqueur has a history of over 500 years and is sold in more than 150 countries. In addition, the company already owns a wine-producing division.

Coldiretti: Brunello Quality encourages Export


Consorzio Brunello di MontalcinoAfter having obtained the highest score from a qualitative point of view, the Brunello di Montalcino made with grapes from the 2004 harvest, stands to lead the Italian comeback on international markets, where almost two thirds of the six million bottles of Brunello produced each year end up, said Coldiretti.

Twenty Ninth Annual Vinum 2005 — When Wine is the Show


Vinum 2003Vinum, the event promoted by the city of Alba, in collaboration with the Piedmont Region administration and the Ente Turismo Alba, Bra, Langhe e Roero (Alba, Bra, Langhe and Roero Tourist Office), and organized by the Go Wine Association, this year will take place on April 23, 24, 25, and on May 1st.

Coldiretti Said Strong Euro Does Not Stop Wine Export


EuroThe strong euro does not hinder demand for Italian wine, which marked a 3 percent increase in exports.

This was, in part, the result of an increase in the European and North American markets (respectively 2 and 2.5 percent), but it was especially due to the positive signals coming from new importing countries such as China, where the value of exports more than doubled (131 percent), as reported by Coldiretti.

All in the Sebastianis (Fifth of five parts)


Sebastini LandmarkSebastiani, one of the best-known names in winemaking, has been on the California scene for a century.

But in the past 20 years, the family business has split three ways into separate wineries, none of which are much like like the winery most people remember.

"Adopt A Barrique": An Interesting Proposal from a Tuscan Winemaker


BarriqueThe commercial farm Tenuta Valdipiatta, located in the famed Tuscan area of Montepulciano, launched a new, interesting initiative dedicated to all wine lovers. The winemaker offers wine buffs the opportunity to 'adopt a barrique' and become a 'producing eno-tourist' or, take the leap all the way and, from a Sunday wine tourist, become a self-producing wine drinker.

"Hands off Grappa", say Slow Food chairman, Carlo Petrini


Grappa"Due to typically absurd European regulations, the name 'Grappa' may, in the future, no longer be exclusively attached to Italian products", he warns. "We fear the EU may revise its European Council Regulation on Alcoholic Drinks, which may result in the name 'Grappa' losing its exclusive 'made in Italy' designation, as has already happened to other Italian wine names such as Brunello, Amarone, Morellino, Vin Santo".

US 2004 Wine Import Data


EnolitechThe December, 2004 wine import data, released by the United States Commerce Department Friday, February 18, confirmed Italy as the number one importer to the US, with a 31 percent market share for the main wine sector, or still wines in bottles containing fewer than two liters.

Ideal Evenings at the Vineria "I Tre Archi"


Tre Archi "Vineria" is an Italian neologism that defines a place where wine is sold. The vineria "I Tre Archi" (The Three Arches) is located in Buttigliera d'Asti, inside the Palazzo Biglione, a building dating back to the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

The palace was recently restructured, but the original wooden ceiling was saved and the three stone arches, that were part of the original structure, give a characteristic, unique touch to the interior.

Wine Festival at the Oriolo Tower


Oriolo ei Fichi, TowerA wine festival in the Faenza hills, surrounded by a wonderful century-old park and overlooking a Medieval tower whose style is unique in Italy.

Romagna, especially in its hilly part, toward the Apennines, is a particularly good place to grow grapes, from which the local winemakers make the much appreciated wines which are highly touted by the various Italian wine guides.

Extraordinary Award For the 100th Goal by Cristian Vieri


Cristin VieriTre Uve (Three Grapes) for one hundred goals, the number of goals achieved by "Bobo" Vieri in serie A, or major legue of Italian soccer.

To celebrate this achievement, Vieri was presented with a wine reserved for ‘grand occasions ’, the Tre Uve Ultima (The Ultimate Three Grapes), by the wine producing estate MGM Mondo del Vino, managed by Alfeo Martini.

Enoforum and Tecnovitis 2005 at Piacenza Expo


Tecnovitis 2005Tecnovitis, Exposition of Products and Services for Viticulture and Enology takes place March 21 to 23, 2005, at the Piacenza Expo Trade Cente . The trade show will be part of the fourth annual Enoforum 2005, the professional forum organized by the Società Italiana di Viticoltura ed Enologia (SIVE, or the "Italian Viticulture and Enology Association), in collaboration with Vinidea. This is one of the most important techno-scientific appointments for the Italian wine industry.

Sulfites Advisory On European Wine Labels As Well


PanelsA new European law, in effect since November 25, 2004 has made mandatory printing a sulfite advisory on the label of wines sold in Europe. A similar law has been in effect for long time in the United States, where about 0.5 percent of the population appears to be somewhat allergic to sulfites.

Australian Closure Fund’s First Study "Proves Oxygen Not Necessary for Ageing Bottled Wine"


ScrewcapAllen Hart, Southcorp's Research & Development Winemaker, released the findings of his study into "the role of oxygen in the ageing of bottled wine" at an intimate presentation for the Wine Press Club of NSW (WPC). Hart's research was completed with the support of a $6,000 grant offered by the Australian Closure Fund (ACF), supported by the WPC (and in conjunction with Auscap, ACI and Grosset Wines).

Sleuthing Out What's In Wine (Part four of four)


Wine DecanterSturgeon bladder in your bubbly?
You'd be surprised at the stuff that's paid a visit to what you're drinking.

Q. & A. – the low-down and dirty on what is, or has been, in your wine.

A Day in Malcesine – "Ciottolando con Gusto"


Malcesine, Lake GardaCiottolando con Gusto opens the tourist season on the Lake Garda shores with an original idea. On April 23 and 24, 2005 the whole municipality will turn into a huge wine and food piazza, thanks to the teamwork of the local administration, the tourist operators and, above all, the"Osti di Malcesine", or "Innkeepers from Malcesine."

Italian Grape and Wine Production – Year 2004


ISTATISTAT (Istituto Nazionale di Statistica, or the Italian "National Statistics Institute") presents the overall results of the 2004 harvest, based upon projections of regional data.

National Journalist Competition Feudi di Guagnano


Feudi di GuagnanoIn order to improve the knowledge and promote the Apulia native grape Negroamaro, the Azienda Agricola Feudi di Guagnano (Guagnano Fiefdom Commercial Farm) launched the second National Journalist Competition Feudi di Guagnano.

Weighing the health benefits, risks of alcohol


Wine GlassIncreasingly, scientific research supports the idea that drinking a small amount of alcohol each day is better for you than never drinking at all. This isn't true for people with some conditions, but overall, data collected from large observational studies show that drinking moderate amounts of alcohol can lower the risk of dying by about 25 percent in any given year for the average person, compared with those who rarely drink.

French Wine Industry Gets €70 Million Support


The French government is to hand its struggling wine industry €70 million (about $91 million) in aid to help it battle falling sales and damaging overproduction.

The financial package is aimed at assisting vintners in financial trouble and improving how its wine is marketed. The French wine industry, one of the world's largest, has been hit by declining consumption at home and the growing popularity of New World wines worldwide.

Frescobaldi to Take Back Mondavi Share


LuceThe Frescobaldi family wants to take over the joint venture share held by Robert Mondavi in the wine farm Luce della Vita (Light of Life), near Montalcino. That's what Marquis Leonardo De' Frescobaldi said in an interview with the German daily "Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung".

Thirteenth Edition Vinitaly International Wine Competition


Vinitaly 2005This is the major world competition in terms of the number of participants, so much so that, despite participation being limited to a maximum of five wines per producer in each category, the event is considered the "number one" by the International Federation of Major Wine Competitions. In addition, it is the most selective competition worldwide, since medals are awarded only to 3 percent of the participating wines, that is, just 88 medals for 3,500 wines.

Coldiretti: Italy is Leader Once Again in the U S


Italian WineThe Italian wine imports to the United States rose by 4.2 percent, overtaking that of French and Australian competitors, stated Coldiretti, (Italian Farmer Association). Notwithstanding the difficulties created by the unfavorable exchange rate, because of the increased value of the euro against the dollar, the Italian Wine & Food Institute figures for the first 11 months of 2004, made Italy the main wine exporter to the US.


Dates to Remember - March / April

Note: To find out more about the places and activities for each event, please visit the News page.

Bacchus' Smile

Monday, February 28 through Sunday, March 6, 2005

Mostra del Prosecco DOC (Prosecco DOC Exhibition)

March 5 to 20, 2005

Festa della Donna (Women Festival)

March 8, 2005

Mostra Prosecco e Cartizze (Prosecco and Cartizze Wine Exhibition)

March 12 to 28, 2005

Mostra dei Vini d’Annata (Vintage Wine Exhibition)

March 19 to 28, 2005

Mostra del Prosecco DOC di Col San Martino (Prosecco DOC from Col San Martino Wine Exhibition)

March 19 to April 10, 2005

TECNOVITIS: Exposition of Products and Services for Viticulture and Enology

March 21, 22 and 23, 2005

Fourth Enoforum 2005 – Professional Updates

March 21, 22 and 23, 2005

Mostra del Vino Prosecco e Cartizze (Prosecco and Cartizze Wine Exhibition)

March 26 to April 10, 2005

13th Edition Vinitaly International Wine Competition

March 29 - 4 April, 2005

Mostra Prosecco e Refrontolo Passito DOC (Prosecco and Refrontolo Passito DOC Wine Exhibition)

April 2 to 17, 2005


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