Tag Archives: lidia bastianich

Looking Forward, Looking back…

Buon Anno Nuovo friends! Welcome to the new BUZZ… the Official blog of the Bastianich and La Mozza wineries!

We are working to improve the look and the effectiveness of the blog in some ways you can see and some ways you can’t. We are migrating to a new host, new design, and plenty of features “under the hood” that will make it better…

But really, what could make a blog better than creating content?

Well, that’s changing too. The blog is no longer a one-man show (yours truly), but I have some very capable help from Julia Segal in New York who will keep me on time with posts (we have already started filling in an editorial calendar! *gasp*) She will also be contributing on a regular basis, (she has her own excellent blog here) So look for posts about the wineries but also about other wine related stuff…

Lastly we are working on guest posts from Joe and Lidia Bastianich, winemakers and other folks connected with the winery. I know I’m excited!

A Brief recap of 2012…

From a winery perspective, 2012 was a great year. The harvest was very good this year, with the biggest problem being heat and lack of rainfall that lowered yields by 25% and shrivelled a lot of berries. Concentration and ripeness were great though, and early tastings point to some really dense and intense wines. The sorting table was an important addition to the cellar and we look forward to seeing it’s effect on quality.

From a sales perspective, we had a fantastic year in Italy in general, Friuli in particular and we opened more international markets in 2012 than in any other calendar year ever! The US market is always our best and we continue to see growth overall in the States.

We also had a proud moment when Vespa Bianco was voted the best Italian Superpremium white wine in Snooth.com’s “Peoples Voice Awards”… News so exciting it was covered in Italy!


The single most exciting addition of 2012 was the opening of the tasting room at the winery in Gagliano…


You can look out to neighbouring  vineyards through the 15-foot glass entrance. It has two Enomatic wine dispensing machines, a serious temperature controlled wine room and a bar complete with a fridge, drawers, glasses and everything –  I’m like a kid in a candy shop! It’s what I’ve personally wanted for the winery for years, and a great way to taste wine and meet folks who come to the winery. And with Joe’s success on the USA and Italian MasterChef TV shows, more and more people are coming every day.

All in all, I can’t complain about 2012. The new year brings possibilities for showing the Bastianich wines in such exotic places as Istanbul, Moscow and the Turks and Caicos Islands!

Finally (and possibly most exciting of all) will be the release this spring of the 2011 vintage of Vespa Bianco. Why am I so excited about the release of a new vintage? I’ve been tasting the elements and the progression of the 2011 Vespa for more than a year now and every time I try it, I get goosebumps. It’s that friggin’ good. I’m looking forward to showing the wine at the new and improved 4-day VinItaly in April just to see if everyone else is as enthusiastic about it as I am. Quite possibly the greatest Vespa EVER.

Buon Proseguimento!


Scenes From a Bastianich Pop-up…

During VinItaly this year we decided to take a different approach to the usual entertaining that we do every year for our importers, distributors and special clients.

Instead of trying to jam into a crowded restaurant that, under pressure of the insanity that is VinItaly, may not show it’s best, we took matters into our own hands. We rented an apartment with a small kitchen and a fairly large dining room. We brought our own wine, food, plates and glasses. We brought our own chefs and sommeliers…

And we created a temporary restaurant, now fashionably called a “Pop-up restaurant”.

We managed 4 dinners, a lunch and a cocktail party in the span of 5 days. It was a huge success. We were able to share, in an intimate atmosphere, our wines and our philosophy of food and wine together to our partners.

Lidia Bastianich was the center of attention and the hostess.

This was one of the first dinners with a group from the Stew Leonard’s stores and our distributors in Connecticut.

Plating and serving from the tiny kitchen…


One of the plates that was a particularly special was the risotto with Montasio cheese, pears and celery which was used as the backdrop for a mini-vertical of Vespa Bianco served from 3-liter bottles. We served 2003, 2004 and 2005, and they simply sang like Maria Callas together with the risotto.

On Sunday we were privileged to have as a guest chef Cesere Giacchini, who made his signature capretto along with a big surprise, his world-famous zabaglione.

This is the stellar kitchen staff that made it all happen: From L to R:

Chef Alex Pillas from DelPosto Restaurant, Our own Gianna from the Bastianich winery, Chef Cesere Giacchini from Fontanafredda and Chef Fortunato Nicotra from Felidia.

I wish I had taken more photos. It seemed like every time something beautiful or amazing happened, or emerged from the kitchen, I was too busy serving or speaking about the wines.

Nonetheless, it was a great, if very tiring, experience for everyone and we look forward to doing it again next year!