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Italian quality wine and food selected by WineCountry.IT
WineCountry.IT
Extensive online database listing Italian wine producers, exporters, importers and distributors
Italian Wine Hub - Extensive online database listing Italian wine producers, exporters, importers and distributors
Extensive online gallery featuring over 1,000 Italian wine labels
Extensive online gallery featuring over 1,000 Italian wine labels

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Italian Flavor Forum VIII
Loris Scagliarini – November 15, 2007
Photos by C. Lepori, L. Scagliarini

IGS - Italian Flavor Forum IV

 

Our eighth invitation-only trade show organized in the San Francisco Bay Area, the Italian Flavor Forum VIII, took place on November 14, 2007 at the Museo ItaloAmericano (Italian American Museum), located in the Landmark Building C of Fort Mason, in the heart of the cool San Francisco Marina district.

The Museum is currently exhibiting hand carved and painted wooden nativity scenes from Val Gardena, in the Dolomite area of the Italian Alps, thus the guests sampled the wines and other Italian specialties presented, wandering among gorgeous artisanal pieces which reminded us that Christmas is rapidly approaching.

Gardena Art - Presepi della Val Gardena

The weather was great, and actually unusually hot for a November afternoon in San Francisco.

The Event

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Wines from Azienda Agricola Montalpruno with one of the hand-carved wooden nativity scenes
from Valgardena, Italy, in exhibition at the Museo ItaloAmericano in San Francisco, CA

At WineCountry.IT we are very pleased to observe that the guests who participate to the Italian Flavor Forum shows are more and more professionals who are truly interested in the quality Italian wine and food products introduced. The turnout was very satisfying, with the first guests actually sneaking in before the official 2PM show opening, and continuing steadily until closing time, at 6 PM.

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

The sparkling and light white wine desk, opened the 'tasting path' at the Italian Flavor Forum VIII.
In the center, WineCountry.IT vice-president, John Dawdy with MDM Distribution's, Melanie Moffett.

This time around we introduced 66 wines, including two white sparkling Proseccos, three frothy Lambrusco (one rosé and two red), 16 dry whites, 36 red and 4 dessert wines, from 8 different Italian wine regions.

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Giorgio Saturnini and Marco Sabbatucci (from right) of Terre di Nano, producer of
Chianti, Orcia, SuperTuscan wines and extra virgin olive oil from Tuscany.

The brake down by region, was the following:

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Francesca and Mauro Zini of Azienda Agricola Mauro Zini (from left), with WineCountry.IT president, Loris Scagliarini.

In addition, we presented four excellent extra virgin olive oils from Tuscany and Apulia, two versions of hazelnut oil from Piedmont, and traditional balsamic vinegar from Modena, from the Emilia Romagna region.

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Simona and Simone Tosi, of Azienda Agricola Montalpruno, in Tuscany.

Of course, we poured all the red wines and some whites, such as the outstanding 2000 Gavi di Gavi DOCG Pilin, by Castellari Bergaglio, using the Centellino, the amazing top-of-the-bottle decanter that WineCountry.IT imports from Italy.

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Jenny Snodgrass, WineCountry.IT sales executive for Marin County (right) with a guest.

The feedback sheets which were filled in and returned by a large number of guests, testify to the fact that all products presented were appreciated, widely by some (WOW! and GREAT!!!! at times were often written in place of the actual numeric evaluation), more moderately by others. The highest average score topped at 90.2 points on a 100-point scale, while the lowest stopped at 75.2. When collecting feedback from a large number of tasters, with different professional and/or personal interests in wine, average points tend to be fairly low, as it's enough to have one score of 70 with nine 90-point scores, to lower the average to score to 88, add an 80, and the average drops to 87. This said, we are happy with the scores reported below.

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Christian Lepori, WineCountry.IT Italian marketing manager, and Alberto Malvestio, WineCountry.IT sales executive for the San Francisco East Bay (from right) pouring wine for note-taking guests.

The Buyers Feedback

We asked our guests, all wine and food professional buyers, to please judge the products using the following 100-point scale.
  • 95-100 = Excellent
  • 90-94 = Very Good
  • 80-89 = Good
  • 70-79 = Average
  • 50-69 = Not recommended

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Pouring Caliscana Sangiovese wine with the top-of-the-bottle decanter, Centellino

I am pleased to notice that the gap between maximum and minimum score is not as huge as it used to be when we organized the first event about one and a half year ago, in some cases there is actually almost an agreement across the board. I would like to think that our Italian Flavor Forums have contributed to familiarizing some San Francisco Bay Area professional tasters with Italian wines. In addition, though there is a lot more interest in red wines compared to white wines and I am pleased that the 16 white selections presented, generally speaking, received what I consider a fair score.

Italian Flavor Forum VIII
MDM Distribution principal, Melanie Moffett (left)
Italian Flavor Forum VIII
Alberto Malvestio, WineCountry.IT sales executive for the San Francisco East Bay

The Best of the Show

Should you be interested in purchasing the products featured in this article, please use the links provided below to contact the right person.

Italian Flavor Forum VIII
Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Other moments of the Italian Flavor Forum VIII, Fall Edition


Sparkling White Wines

       
Wine Name Producer Region Highest Score Lowest Score
Average Score
Ruio– Valdobbiadene Prosecco DOC Spumante Brut 2006 Azienda Agricola Malibran Veneto 94
(+ one YUM!)
70
88.45
Gorio – Valdobbiadene Prosecco DOC Spumante Extra Dry 2006 Azienda Agricola Malibran Veneto 93 75
86.15

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Sparkling Red & RosèWines

       
Wine Name Producer Region Highest Score Lowest Score
Average Score
Lambrusco Emilia IGT Azienda Agricola Mauro Zini Emilia Romagna 100 80
85.43
Rosato Italiano IGT Azienda Agricola Mauro Zini Emilia Romagna 100 79
85.08
Lambrusco Rosso IGT Azienda Agricola Mauro Zini Emilia Romagna 100 75
84.58

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Dry White Wines

       
Wine Name Producer Region Highest Score Lowest Score
Average Score
Soave Classico DOC 2004 Azienda Agricola T•E•S•S•A•R•I Veneto 89 75 86.15
Aurora Monteregio di Massa Marittima DOC 2005 Fattoria Coliberto Tuscany 88 80
85.00
Gavi DOCG di Tassarolo Fornaci 2004 Castellari Bergaglio Piedmont 89 80
84.67
Solaluce – Monferrato Bianco Classico 2004 Azienda Vitivinicola Colledoro Piedmont 90 78
84.60
Langhe DOC Arneis 2005 Azienda Agricola Gagliardi Piero Emilia Romagna 91 70 84.34
Gavi DOCG di Gavi Rovereto VignaVecchia 2004 Castellari Bergaglio Piedmont 90 70 84.12
Romangia Vermentino di Sardegna DOC - 2006 Cooperativa Vinicola Romangia Sardinia 91 72 84.12
Verduzzo DOC Colli Orientali del Friuli 2005 Mosolo Gleni Friuli Venezia Giulia 88 78
83.89
Vermentino di Sardegna DOC - La Pagliastra 2004 Cooperativa Vinicola Romangia Sardinia 89 73 83.00
Gavi DOCG di Gavi Rolona 2004 Castellari Bergaglio Piedmont 86 71
82.67
Falanghina Pompeiano Bianco IGT 2005 Casa Vinicola Ferraro Campania 86 73 82.40
Tocai Friulano DOC Colli Orientali del Friuli 2005 Mosolo Gleni Friuli Venezia Giulia 89 74
81.67
Fior Fiore Ansonica IGT 2005 Caliscana Tuscany 88 70
81.29
Sereno Toscana Bianco IGT 2005 Montalpruno Tuscany 88 70
80.85
Pinot Grigio DOC Colli Orientali del Friuli 2005 Mosolo Gleni Friuli Venezia Giulia 87 65
79.70
Gavi DOCG Pilin 2000 Castellari Bergaglio Piedmont 87 65
79.33

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Dry Red Wines

       
Wine Name Producer Region Highest Score Lowest Score
Average Score
Barbera d’Asti DOC Superiore Cascina Perno 2003 Poderi Rosso Giovanni Piedmont 96 84
90.20
Maclura Toscana IGT SuperTuscan 2003 / 2005 Terre di Nano Tuscany 95 85
90.15
Barbera d’Asti DOC Superiore Vigna del Carlinet 2003 Poderi Rosso Giovanni Piedmont 100 82
89.25
Toscana IGT Sangiovese 2005 Montalpruno Tuscany 98 83 89.12
Chianti dei Colli Senesi DOCG 2006 Terre di Nano Tuscany 91 85
88.60
Il Canto del Leccio Chianti Riserva DOCG 2004 Montalpruno Tuscany 100 77 88.23
Barbera d’Asti DOC 2004 Poderi Rosso Giovanni Piedmont 91 84
88.00
Montalpruno Toscana IGT SuperTuscan 2003 Montalpruno Tuscany 98 77 87.56
Infinito – Monferrato DOC 2003 Poderi Rosso Giovanni Piedmont 99 70
87.10
Brunello di Montalcino La Togata 2002 DOCG Tenuta Carlina S.a.s. Tuscany 93 80 87.00
La Marina – Cannonau di Sardegna DOC 2003 Cooperativa Vinicola Romangia Sardinia 92 75 86.91
Merigge 2004 IGT Toscana Azienda Agricola Buccelletti Vivai Tuscany 89 85
86.25
Quercialsale Orcia Rosso DOC 2005 Terre di Nano Tuscany 92 85
86.20
Lacryma Christi del Vesuvio DOC 2005 Casa Vinicola Ferraro Campania 95 78 86.00
Quercialsale Orcia Rosso DOC 2003 Terre di Nano Tuscany 92 85 86.00
Poventa DOC Valdichiana 2003 Azienda Agricola Buccelletti Vivai Tuscany 91 82 86.00
Thesan Riserva 2002 DOC Monteregio di Massa Marittima Fattoria Coliberto Tuscany 89 80 86.00
Barlettaia Chianti Colli Senesi DOCG 2005 Terre di Nano Tuscany 89 80
85.25
Occhini  IGT Toscana 2004 Fattoria `"La Striscia" Tuscany 91 79
85.12
Barlettaia Chianti Colli Senesi DOCG 2003 Terre di Nano Tuscany 89 80
84.75
Laran 2003 DOC Monteregio di Massa Marittima Fattoria Coliberto Tuscany 89 79 84.34
Caliscana Poliphemus 2004 Toscana IGT Caliscana Tuscany 89 80 84.00
Monica di Sardegna DOC 2004 Cooperativa Vinicola Romangia Sardinia 93 75 84.00
Caliscana Occidental 2004 Toscana IGT Caliscana Tuscany 89 70 83.40
Cabernet Franc DOC Colli Orientali del Friuli 2005 Mosolo Gleni Friuli Venezia Giulia 87 82
83.40
Noeddus – Cannonau di Sardegna DOC 2004 Cooperativa Vinicola Romangia Sardinia 98 75 83.34
Morello 2004 DOC Monteregio di Massa Marittima Fattoria Coliberto Tuscany 87 79 83.34
Caliscana Sangiovese 2005 Toscana IGT Caliscana Tuscany 89 79 83.20
Caliscana Sangiovese 2004 Toscana IGT Caliscana Tuscany 89 79 83.00
Mandonion – Primitivo di Manduria DOC CantOlio – Cantina ed Oleificio Sociale di Manduria Apulia 87 80
83.00
Jennos – Cannonau di Sardegna DOC 2004 Cooperativa Vinicola Romangia Sardinia 86 75 83.00
Chianti Bernardino DOC 2004 Fattoria `"La Striscia" Tuscany 90 73
83.00
Caliscana Merlot 2005 Toscana IGT Caliscana Tuscany 90 79 82.50
Caliscana Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 Toscana IGT Caliscana Tuscany 89 79 82.34
Caliscana Merlot 2004 Toscana IGT Caliscana Tuscany 90 79 82.25
Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso DOC Colli Orientali del Friuli 2005 Mosolo Gleni Friuli Venezia Giulia 89 65
81.86
Le Baccanti – Primitivo di Manduria DOC 2004 CantOlio – Cantina ed Oleificio Sociale di Manduria Apulia 98 70
81.80
Sito Romano Dolcetto d'Alba DOC 2004 Tenimenti Marchisio d'Osasca Piedmont 83 75 79.72
Aglianico Sannio V.Q.P.R.D. 2005 Vini Iovine s.n.c. Campania 88 68
78.17
Penisola Sorrentina Rosso V.Q.P.R.D. 2005 Vini Iovine s.n.c. Campania 84 65
75.20

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Dessert Wines

       
Wine Name Producer Region Highest Score Lowest Score
Average Score
Ventisei Moscato d'Asti DOCG Azienda Vitivinicola Colledoro Piedmont 96 86
89.20
Abeterno – Primitivo di Manduria 2004 DOC CantOlio Manduria sca Apulia 96 86
89.00
Recioto di Soave DOCG Tre Colli Azienda Agricola T•E•S•S•A•R•I Veneto 90 85
87.29
Moscato di Sorso Sennori DOC Cooperativa Vinicola Romangia Sardinia 94 71
83.88

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Balsamic Vinegar from Modena

Product Name Producer Region Highest Score Lowest Score
Average Score
Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Modena Extraveccio (ABTM) – Aged 25 Years Acetaia La Tradizione Emilia Romagna 93 88
89.00
Balsamic Vinegar from Modena Silver Label Acetaia La Tradizione Emilia Romagna 89 88
88.50
Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Modena Affinato (ABTM) – Aged 12 Years Acetaia La Tradizione Emilia Romagna 90 86
88.00

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Product Name Producer Region Highest Score Lowest Score
Average Score
Extra Virgin Olive Oil Terre di Nano Tuscany 92 70
89.50
Olivolo – Extra Virgin Olive Oil from Organically Grown Olives Azienda Agricola Buccelletti Vivai Tuscany 90 88
89.00
Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil DOP Dauno Sub-appennino Azienda Agricola Masseriola Apulia 90 87
88.50
Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil Azienda Agricola Masseriola Apulia 88 85
86.50

The Blind Tasting

Two Italian and three US experts participated in the blind tasting face-off between two North American and three Italian wines. The wines were supposed to be six, but a bottle of Niebaum-Coppola Captain Reserve Merlot 2004 mysteriously disappeared from the museum library, where the blind tasting was set up, so we had to make do with only two US wines.

There were two whites,Chardonnay 2005 from Alcantara Vineyards, Arizona, and Gavi di Tassarolo DOCG Fornaci 2006 by Castellari Bergaglio, from Italy, and three red wines (Sangiovese Il Palio 2004 by Martin & Weyrich Winery from Paso Robles, the Merigge Merlot 2004 by Azienda Agricola Buccelletti, and Barengo Toscana IGT 2005 by Tenuta La Carlina. (Both Italian red wines are from Tuscany). The experts who kindly accepted to be part of the jury are Claudia Temby, globe trotter wine expert, Thuy T. Nguyen, wine consultant for restaurants, and Thys Bui, of California Wine Connections, for the US team. The Italian counterpart was represented by Christian Lepori, WineCountry.IT Italian marketing manager, and Giorgio Saturnini, of Italian wine estate Terre di Nano.

Italian Flavor Forum VIII - Blind Tasting
Italian Flavor Forum VIII - Blind Tasting
Italian Flavor Forum VIII - Blind Tasting

The Blind Tasting
Top, from left: Giorgio Saturnini, Claudia Temby, Thuy T. Nguyen, Thys Bui, Christian Lepori, John Dawdy.
Middle: Giorgio Saturnini, Claudia Temby, Thuy T. Nguyen, Thys Bui, Christian Lepori.
Bottom: Giorgio Saturnini, Claudia Temby, Thuy T. Nguyen.

The Sangiovese Il Palio 2004 by Martin & Weyrich Winery from Paso Robles came out ahead with the total score of 40.7 points, or an average of 8.14 on a 10-point scale, with points ranging from 9.5 to 7.

Splitting the two sets of scores, the US team would have assigned the victory to the winner, while for the Italian judges the best was the Barengo Toscana IGT 2005 by Tenuta La Carlina.

Wine Producer
Region
Italian Judges Score
US Judges Score
Overall Score
Sangiovese Il Palio 2004 Martin & Weyrich Winery
Paso Robles
9.5
7
40.7
Barengo Toscan IGT 2005 Tenuta Carlina S.a.s. Tuscany
9
6.5
39.2
Gavi DOCG di Tassarolo Fornaci 2006 Castellari Bergaglio
9+
6
37.5+
Chardonnay 2005 Alcantara Vineyards
Arizona
8.5
5.5
36
Merigge 2004 IGT Toscana Azienda Agricola Buccelletti Vivai Tuscany
8
5
35

The Drawing

To express our gratitude, at the end of the show we held a drawing from among all the guests that returned their feedback forms filled with their evaluations of the products tasted.

Italian Flavor Forum VIII

The grand prize winner was Holly Larsen, to whom we delivered the following wines:

Italian Flavor Forum VIII


 
 
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