Wine News - November 2008

Welcome to VOLUME VI, NUMBER 9 of Wine News, the e-Letter from the WineCountry.IT network. (Would you rather see the e-Letter on your favorite browser? Use this link. Usa il link seguente se vuoi leggere le News in italiano).

Italian Flavor Consortium: Italian Boutique Wines

Italian Flavor Forum X

November 12, 2008
Golden Gate Yacht Club
San Francisco, California

Exclusively By Invitation
For Trade & Press Only

Over 60 Italian quality wines from seven wine producing regions.


While US citizens are voting in the early states, or are getting ready to vote in record number on November 4, we are getting ready for, and are very excited about, our upcoming Italian Flavor Forum X, the tenth such event which is now less than two weeks away.

This time we will open a half hour in advance for the press only, to present the Centellino, the amazing top-of-the-bottle wine aerator which we recently agreed to import exclusively to the US, to them. For the occasion, the owner and general manager of Table Top, the Tuscan company which researched and designed the Centellino Areadivino, will be on hand to answer the journalists' questions.

In the meantime, we have the usual series of articles of interest to all lovers of Italian wine, but not only that.

Interesting, though alarming, are the results of a study by two British researchers, published just a few days ago on the Chemistry Central Journal web site. They found red and white wines from 12, out of 15 European, South American and the Middle Eastern countries taken into consideration, to contain potentially dangerous amounts of toxic heavy metals. Italian, Argentinean and Brazilian wines were the only ones without significant maximum THQ (target hazard quotients) values.

Enjoy your reading with a glass of good, uncontaminated Italian wine. Cheers,

Loris Scagliarini, WineCountry.IT President

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Heavy Metals Found in Wine

San Francisco International Wine Competition 2008On October 30, 2008, the Chemistry Central Journal web site accepted and published an article by Declan P Naughton and Andrea Petroczi which reveals that lab analyses found dangerous amounts of toxic heavy metals in red and white wines from various parts of the world.

First of all, we would like to quote from page 7 of the original article (PDF file, 520Kb), "Notably only the Argentinean and Italian wines appraised do not feature with significant maximum THQ (target hazard quotients) values."

San Martino e le Donne del Vino: 2nd Annual:
Gender Wine, Tasting and Comparisons

San Martino e le Donne del VinoOn November 15, 2008, at Cassano delle Murge, in the province of Bari, the second annual San Martino e le Donne del Vino (St. Martin Festival and the Women in Wine). The event is promoted by the Municipality of Cassano delle Murge, Cultural Association "I Tipici di Puglia" (The Typical [Products] of Apulia), Donne del Vino (Women in Wine) association ", Associazione Levante (East Association), Comitato per L'Imprenditoria al Femminile (Committee for Female Entrepreneurship) of the Chamber of Commerce of Bari, Italian Agriculture Ministry, Assessorato Ricerche Agroalimentari (Department for Produce Research) of the Apulia Region, administration of the Province of Bari, ONILFA and the Apulia chapter of the Associazione Italiana Sommeliers (AIS, or Italian Association of Sommeliers, among others.

France Vintners Against Changes in Drinking Laws

WineWhat worries the French vintners this harvest season is neither the weather nor the quality of the new wines. What have them up in arms are the new French government rules. Pressed by anti-alcoholism campaigners, French lawmakers want to make it harder to sell and drink wine in France, despite the fact that the wine industry is already struggling.

San Martino in Cantina:
The Veneto Region Proposes 27 Interpretations of Autumn

San Martino in CantinaThe month of November is particularly effervescent in the Itaian region of Veneto.

This year at San Martino the vitivinicultural producers committed to organizing a truly different type of festival. In fact, each winery will propose its own interpretation of the Fall season and the yearly Festa di San Martino (San Martino Festival), by offering local typical food products paired with the new wines and storytelling, music and dance.

Bollicine su Trento

BollicineFrom November 27 to December 14, 2008, the Enoteca Provinciale of Trento, located at Palazzo Roccabruna, returns to the event dedicated to the product symbol of the regional enology. In addition to the typical spumante (sparkling wine) produced with Chardonnay and/or Pinot grapes, the collective brand TRENTODOC will present wine-and-food-based meetings, tastings and in-depth discovery of the elegant enogastronomic traditions of this northeastern province of Italy.

Italian Festival Hits Hanoi with Food, Wine and More

Week of the Italian Language in the WorldA book reading by Italian writer Marco Mancassola on October 20, 2008, opened the 'Week of the Italian Language in the World', which is part of a larger Italian festival in Viet Nam.

"A sequence of events aimed at further strengthening not only cultural, but also economic and commercial bilateral ties. It is with this objective in mind that I intend to operate my mission in Viet Nam," said Italian Ambassador, Andrea Perugini.

Meran International WineFestival & Culinaria

Merano International WineFestival & CulinariaGourmet's International, importer and distributor of fine European gourmet food from Merano, Italy, presents the 17th Meran International WineFestival & Culinaria. At least 305 Italian and 210 international wines welcome wine lovers and gourmands at the Kurhaus palace in Merano. A long corridor will lead visitors to the Culinaria section dedicated to gourmet food, where as many as 135 gastronomic specialties from various parts of Italy will be available. At the same time, in Piazza Terme (Hot Springs Square). a space called GourmetArena will host 15 prize-winning chefs who will cook live under the eyes of the participants.

The Event "Più Gusto Italia 2008" Moved to March 2009

A.S.T.R.ID, Il Gusto per la TradizioneThe event entitled "Più Gusto Italia 2008" (More Taste [from] Italy 2008), the first trade show dedicated to Italian wine and food for the restaurant industry, to be held at Venturina-Campiglia Marittima, in the province of Livorno, has been moved to the 6th to 9th of March, 2009. The organizers decided to postpone the appointment to avoid time conflicts with other important events of interested for the exhibitors.

Marino, Italy: Quality Wines Pours from the Faucet

KoreaEvery year Marino, a town south of Rome in the Castelli Romani (Roman Castles) wine-producing zone, celebrates the Sagra dell'Uva (Grape Festival), an annual event held at the end of the harvest, by routing the new wine to an ornate fountain in the main square of town.

This year however, citizens and visitors who gathered around the fountain with jugs, canteens, goblets and and beakers in hand, waited in vain for the yearly "miracle" to be performed by the local administration's engineers who, thanks to the the town's creative plumbing running below the streets, manage this feat.

Birthday Sideways 2008: Lake Tahoe & Yosemite Park – Part 1

Bonterra ViognierThursday, October 9, 2008
We head off from San Anselmo, California at a leisurely pace around noon, the day after my wife Brigit's birthday, going north on Highway 101, rather than following the GPS instructions to head south, cross the Golden Gate Bridge into San Francisco, drive along the bay and cross the Bay Bridge to Highway 80. North of Novato we take the 37, which takes us to the 80 at Vallejo, and we are on our way toward Sacramento and Lake Tahoe.

Part 2

The Picchetti Winery tasting room, at South Lake TahoeAs usual, we are scouting good American wines to face off against comparable Italian products in the blind tasting we organize during our Italian Flavor Forums. The 10th of these is coming up soon, on November 12, 2008, at the Golden Gate Yacht Club, in San Francisco, so, by noon we are stepping into the tasting room of the Picchetti Winery.

Part 3

picnicAt breakfast we find out that the Tioga Pass, at an elevationof 9,945 feet, has been closed because of the unexpected snowfall. As the Tioga Pass allows the only access to Yosemite Park from the east, it means that we must drive back on Highway 50 all the way to Placerville, where our friends, Wayne and Barbara Procissi have their cave.

Part 4

Yosemite Park, October 2008We sleep in a bit and after a late morning breakfast at the Lodge cafe we board one of the Yosemite Valley complimentary shuttles, the hybrid buses which takes visitors around Yosemite, depositing them at the various centers and trail heads. As we are not truly equipped for a serious mountain hike, we choose to take the Vernal Fall trail, which is split in two parts.

Part 5

Yosemite paper cup safety holderAfter a light breakfast we check out and take a last easy hike to the nearby Lower Yosemite Falls. Walking among these majestic trees, standing in the shadows of these colossal peaks. we feel small and inconsequential, though we are well aware of what a threatening, potentially damaging animal the human being is.

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Beyond Wine

We continue the introduction of Italy's 155 Protected Designations of Origin (PDO, or, in Italian, DOP, Denominazione di Origine Protetta) and Protected Geographical Indications (PGI, or IGP in Italian, Indicazione Geografica Protetta) products. This month we present saffron, the most expensive spice in the whole world, which costs more per gram that any known drug or food product. Italy produces two varieties which were awarded the DOP recognition by the European Communion: the Zafferano dell'Aquila DOP from the Abruzzo region,

Zafferano dell'Aquila DOP

and the Zafferano di San Gimignano DOP from Tuscany.

Zafferano di San Gimignano DOP


Italian Wine Hub

Italian Flavor Consortium

Italian Flavor ConsortiumBy invitation only!
Dedicated to wine and food buyers and trade writers only

Read about previous events:
  • Italian Flavor Forum IX
  • Italian Flavor Forum VIII
  • Italian Flavor Forum VII
  • Italian Flavor Forum VI
  • Italian Flavor Forum V
  • Italian Flavor Forum IV
  • Italian Flavor Forum III
  • Italian Flavor Forum II
  • IFF Premiere

  • 11th Miami Food &
    Beverages Show 2008
  • Cena con l'Importatore at
    Fratello's Restaurant
  • Women Wine Competition
  • Vino in Villa 2008
  • Woodlands Market
  • Vino Italiano 2008
  • Dinner with the Producers
  • Vinitaly San Francisco 07
  • Vino in Villa 2007
  • Prissi Cellar Open House

  • Vino Italiano 2007

  • Columbus Day @ Aldersly
  • Pomeriggio Italiano
  • Gavi @ Ottimista

Emporio Italia: Buy Italian Wine online
Italian Flavor Consortium:
Associate Producers
  1. Acetaia "La Tradizione"– Produttore: Malagoli DanieleEmilia-Romagna
  2. Azienda Agricola Alberto Monti – Emilia Romagna
  3. Azienda Agricola Buccelletti VivaiTuscany
  4. Azienda Agricola Gagliardi PieroPiedmont
  5. Azienda Agricola MálibranVeneto
  6. Azienda Agricola MasseriolaApulia
  7. Azienda Agricola MontalprunoTuscany
  8. Azienda Agricola Mosolo GleniFriuli Venezia Giulia
  9. Azienda Agricola T•E•S•S•A•R•IVeneto
  10. Azienda Agricola, Vitivinicola e Agrituristica "La Carletta"Tuscany
  11. Azienda Vitivinicola Colledoro di Clara C. AmbrosioPiedmont
  12. Azienda Vitivinicola Caliscana di Roberto CreaToscana
  13. Cantina Vitivinicola RomangiaSardinia
  14. CantOlio Manduria scaApulia
  15. Casa Vinicole FerraroCampania
  16. Castellari Bergaglio Azienda VitivinicolaPiedmont
  17. Fattoria ColibertoTuscany
  18. Fattoria La StrisciaTuscany
  19. Poderi Rosso GiovanniPiedmont
  20. Tenimenti Marchisio d'OsascaPiedmont
  21. Tenuta Carlina S.a.s. – La TogataTuscany
  22. Terre di NanoTuscany
  23. Vini Iovine s.n.c. di Aniello IovineCampania
  24. ZiniViniEmilia Romagna
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