Tempus Fugit

It’s been a long time since I’ve blogged. Amazing how time flies!

One of the things that has been occupying my time has been traveling. I have been to 3 wine-fairs in the last 2 weeks alone.

The first was the most interesting because it brought me to a place I’d never been before: Prague! We participated in a stand at the national wine fair in the Czech Republic called “Vino e Distilaty”. The stand was (very well) organized by the Consorzio di Colli Orientali del Friuli. We were there with a group of producers from our DOC: Valentino Butussi, Rocca Bernarda, Conte d’Attimis-Maniago, Ronchi San GiuseppeGiovanni Dri, La Sclusa, Vigna Traverso, and Maurizio Zaccomer. It was a good chance to go to a new market and try and open some doors there…
Czech
That’s Dennis and me at the stand. We were pleased with the openness and curiosity of the people, who were also extremely polite and sunny. Honestly, I was really impressed with how positive and courteous everyone was. Lots of people seemed interested in our Sauvignon “B”, but someone explained that it was rare that a Czech will drink a white wine from outside the country. They were tasting to compare theirs to ours! Unfortunately, as nice as everyone was, what we managed to taste from their vineyards left a LOT to be desired. The import market there is MUCH more tuned into red wines, as they are nearly impossible to produce in the Czech Republic.

In the end, we didn’t find anyone definite to import our wines, but we made some solid contacts and hopefully one of them will pan out. I didn’t get to spend enough time there (36 hours, more or less) and I feel the need to explore the city center a little bit more…

We went from Prague almost directly to another fair in Croatia. Vinistra is the annual meeting of Producers from the Istrian peninsula, concentrating on Malvasia Istriana. That was a true “whirlwind”, but with the help of Alex, my super-savvy friend from Belgrade, we were able to find a small, high-quality importer to both Croatia and Serbia… Success!

Finally, last Monday our Italian distributor held their big tasting event for the southern part of Italy in Napoli. It was a one day event and I was happy to see clients from Roma to Puglia there to investigate new wines.
Napoil1   There I am explaining what a Super-Med is to a pair of budding wine experts. (Same jacket, different shirt from Prague, so save the comments about how I only have one nice shirt). The event went well, and I even got to get my teachin on in a Seminar about great white wines:
Napoli2 From L to R you have Paola from Querciabella, who presented the 1998 Batar, which was a bomb (in the best sense of the word), Manni Nossing who presented his 2006 Kerner, which was WAY more complex than any Kerner (and many white wines in general) I’ve EVER tasted. Hidden behind me is Franz Pratzner from Falkenstein in Alto Adige, whose Riesling (2005?) was so good it damn near killed me.
And then me there presenting 2004 Vespa Bianco (drinking BEAUTIFULLY right now) and talking way too much. I like animating these tastings and evoking a bit of discussion…

AND FINALLY… Now that I’m back, I took a few minutes to show some of the growth in our vineyards… Remember those tiny buds breaking and those thumbnail-sized grape leaves?…
Growth1 …Well they’ve grown! And now you can even see some proto-grape bunches there!
Here’s a close-up:
Babygrapes2 Finally, I leave you with a more “poetic” photo… more of a study of light and texture… which is just a nice way of saying “I was playing with my new camera and I got lucky”…
Sunpole Ok, now back to work!

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