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Donatella Cinelli Colombini presents herself part 2

In 1998 when I left my family’s estate (one of the oldest and most prestigious producing Brunello) to create my own, that bears my name, it really seemed a “mission impossible”By Donatella Cinelli Colombini[caption id="attachment_10091" align="alignleft" width="225" caption="Donatella Cinelli Colombini Cavaliere della Repubblica"][/caption]Again like in my other troubled chellenges I...

Screw-caps beat corks, at least among young consumers

Easy to open and reclose this convinces the majority of consumers, but only 1 out of 3 would choose the screw-cap bottle between two similar wines

Mollydooker Carnival of Love N° 2 Top 100 Wine Spectator

By Donatella Cinelli Colombini

Spain, Italy, and France, great nations for wine production still choose corks, but screw-caps are loved more by Germans, Americans and the British. The aluminum closure is preferred mostly by young consumers and particularly by women



The data comes from a survey carried out by IPSOS regarding 6.000 consumers in Italy France, UK Germany, Spain and USA. What surprises is the great distance between the producers decisions and the preferences of those who buy bottles. So in Spain where screw-caps are used only on 10 % of wines, where 43% of consumers prefer them

Less difference in Italy where  59% of consumers still like to use the corkscrew and the  screw-cap’s progress is slow going from 17 to 19% on wine bottles in 5 years. But there is 34% of Italian who with equal prices would prefer the screw-cap for practical reasons, even though the majority of them are convinced that cork maintains the quality of the wine.

Those asking for aluminum closures are the importing countries with Britain top of the list.

It is in these markets that the screw-cap is no longer connected to low quality wines and most of all to wines with low prices. Of course  91% of New Zealand wines and  70% of Australian wines have a screw-cap and the former are also quite expensive .

Donatella Cinelli Colombini presents herself

How can I describe myself? I am imaginative, hard working and lucky. I am also short, a little plump, sensitive to the cold, and attracted by people, places and activities that I do not know

Donatella and Violante at Casato Prime Donne Montalcino

By Donatella Cinelli Colombini

First of all I would like to tell you something that very few people know. I am dyslexic, (please check https://dopasolution.com/what-is-dyslexia  for a brilliant article by Tina Richards for those with dyslexia who rely on web accessibility).I grew up in a period where no one knew what dyslexia was and when children who per slower in learning were considered retarded. Only when my daughter Violante also showed the same disability I understood the pros and cons in having a different concept of space, but we are also determined and we have an exceptional ability in organization, for this reason many architects are dyslexic .

I studied History of medieval art. You might say << whatever for as you are a wine producer?>> Incredibly it is very useful. At the end of the 1970’s there were no computers , not even in the large libraries, and to do research meant that you had to use every little part of your brain, after then I have never again worked so hard and had such  exiting times.

History of art is my great love (after my husband obviously), for years I avoided going to museums, this because I could not stand no longer having the knack in understanding epochs, provenance and creators…just like a musician going deaf. Now I once again enjoy going to museums. I even took the Brunello producers to the Guggenheim in NY, and to the Art Institute in Chicago.

After street food, now its wine's turn to be served in the street

In USA the best wineries begin selling their wines on the street, and in Italy we have Caràvin that offers great wines by young wine makers


Seen for you by Donatella Cinelli Colombini

In Portland in Oregon, Ryan Harms (owner and winemaker of the  Union Wine Co. Winery born in  2005,and producing at present 1.300.000 bottles has transformed  a 1972 Citroën van into an itinerant chrome  tasting room . He began his activity in June  2014 offering his Pinot Noir’s while they were being tasted also at the International Pinot Noir Conference. A serious provocation if there ever was one!


His plan was very simple << we are always on the lookout to find a way of introducing wine to the public…>>.

I find this approach extraordinary, and very modern and fun. In Italy it would be a real blow for a brand ….imagine  Sassicaia being tasted in the street! Yet our boring old ways can change. And searching on the web  find WineStreet from Asti who last September organized itinerant tastings. A very modern style, an audience of young wine lovers but the locations were actually buildings.

More than 10 million tourists visit Italian wineries

As everyone knows data regarding wine tourism in Italy is uncertain but Wine Monitor by Nomisma makes us think that wine tourists might be double what we thought up until now

Castello della sala barrel ageing area

Seen for you by Donatella Cinelli Colombini


This research has been carried out by Denis Pantini from Nomisma and financed by the Consorzio vini del Trentino. This is what they say: 9% of foreign tourists and  4,7% of Italians travel thanks to a prevalently gastronomic interest. Out of caution, regarding especially the figures to follow, it must be said that Bankitalia indicates on the other hand in 730.000 (2012) so 1,5% of the total the foreign visitors attracted by wine and food. More similar to the Nomisma percentages are though those that come from the Osservatorio Nazionale del Turismo that however regard 2010.

Valpolicella wine store and restaurant

Going back to the percentages indicated by the research centre in Bologna these are the figures available: 16 million foreigners and 7,8 Italians considering all our compatriots, children included, as the wine and food tourism is made up mostly of “day trips”, (86% of the total according to WineNews) so a journey with a radius of less than 100 km from home.


This information seems to increase the number of visitors of Italian wineries. In if fact if it is true that the number of visitors for wine and food go to visit the “mysterious underground Bacchus locations” there is however a quota of them that visits more than one winery during the year.

Giorgio Dalla Cia, an Italian wine man in South Africa

The Italian winemaker who has divulged wine to be cellared in South Africa. Giorgio Dalla Cia from Friuli to Meerlust

Giorgio Dalla Cia

Seen for you by Carlo Gardini 
South Africa: wonderful beaches, incredible nature, and a simple lifestyle although full of incredible refined things… I remember a meal in a resort in the savannah, in a small restaurant that seats about 20 guests, furnished like a Victorian home. In front there is an artificial lake full of birds and wild geese which was lit by torches, in the background the Drakensberg mountains …. At the table we were served delicacies apt for a starred restaurant matched with exquisite wines ……..there is only one thought in my mind: when will I be able to come back?

My wife Donatella (Cinelli Colombini) and I began visiting South Africa 15 years ago, and for 6 years we went really often. We were so fascinated by this nation that we tried to create a wine project in the Cape region.

StellenboschWe visited practically all of the important wineries at that time, we met the owners and the winemakers, and we made friends, people with whom still today we are in contact regardless of the distance and the time passing. One of the first people we met was Giorgio Dalla Cia < if you go to South Africa and you love wine you must meet Giorgio > we were told. And so we met him. He is a wine maker from Azzano Veneto, expert in mushrooms and with a passion for archaeology and metal detectors. He is a traditionalist, perfectionists, and like all intelligent people he is unconventional and courageous.
Giorgio is always kind and smiles a lot, he dresses in an informal manner as the South Africans do, and he always has a hat with him.  Simonetta his wife is a splendid cook organizes Italian cookery lessons and has divulged our cuisine in South Africa. Their home is like a Friuli house with garden and pool, transferred to Cape Town.  Furniture, books lifestyle even the TV programs give one the impression of being in Italy.

What a scandal! Prosecco on tap

In London they sell it as  “Sparkling Italian wine” and it’s all the rage: Pizza Pilgrims in Soho, Tozi in Victoria and the Covent Garden restaurant

prosecco on tap

prosecco on tap

Read for you by Donatella Cinelli Colombini

It all started just before Christmas when a pub in Leeds promoted via Facebook Prosecco on tap. This news was then picked up by the Daily Mail and got a hashtag on Twitter that was very successful #proseccoontap. At that point the Veneto producers our out for blood soliciting the intervention of the Ispettorato centrale della tutela della qualità e repressione frodi.



In fact the European rulings impose the sale of Prosecco only in bottles. So the name of the wine was substituted and became  “Sparkling Italian wine”  but the type of wine has remained the same both in its aromas and in its taste. And the pub landlords use the “said and unsaid” to commercialize it as Prosecco even without specifically writing it.

The best 2014 wine post regards Turkish wines

The digital wine Oscar, Wine blog award, went to  Lauren Mowery for a post regarding Turkish wines made with autochthonous varieties published in her blog Chasing the vine

Read for you by Donatella Cinelli Colombini

Lauren Mowery

Lauren Mowery

There are 9 wine blog awards but the most important is surely the one for best blog post of the year. The award exists since 2007 and has quickly asserted itself as a prestigious prize.  There are about one

Wine Blog Awards

Wine Blog Awards

hundred participants and they get voted online, so as to choose the 5 finalists. A panel of experts then chooses the winner. The award living ceremony takes place during the Wine Bloggers Conference, resembling the real Oscar ceremony which takes place in front of the whole film world.
But let’s see you won the most desired prize, she is called Lauren Mowery and is a pretty young blonde journalist who writes about travel and wine. Here articles have been published by Wine & Spirits, Wine Enthusiast, Saveur, and The Wine Merchant …. and by many other magazines among which her personal blog Chasing the Vine. On  Twitter she has 14.200 followers … in other words she is a grand opinion leader and most of all she has had the courage to study a wine region which is still unknown such as Turkey letting us thus all discover a paradox. It is the nation with the longest wine making history – 7-15.000 years –and the political and religious situation most contrary to the consumption of alcohol.

Giacosa Collina Rionda, Barolo (dark label)

Which are the most expensive Italian wines?

Barolo Collina Rionda by Bruno Giacosa, Amarone Classico riserva by Giuseppe Quintarelli and Masseto these are the most expensive Italian bottles

Read for you by Donatella Cinelli Colombini

Giacosa Collina Rionda, Barolo (dark label)

Giacosa Collina Rionda, Barolo (dark label)

This is a list where all the Italian producers would like to see their bottles, a list which transforms the appreciation of the critics and the market in prices company income, in other words the economical prize for the many efforts, risks and all the passion that goes into every drop of wine.
The list comes from Intravino which advises the Italians to spend in great National bottles the increases in the pay packets promised by Renzi, the prime minister. Maybe the money will not be enough but it would certainly make those who made this decision very happy. These are in fact exceptional bottles, maybe even better than foreign wines with inaccessible prices. It all begins with the information from Winesearcher the portal that fishes for prices from a database of 44.439shops all over the world. The list of the most expensive wines is based on their average price regarding several vintages and without taxes (our VAT).

Montalcino CasatoPrimeDonne Ardita MarcoPignattai

Brunello 2008 Riserva out to conquer the world

Donatella Cinelli Colombini’s passion is evident in this Riserva 2008 destined to few restaurants and wine stores in 32 nations[caption id="attachment_8872" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Brunello-Riserva-2008-"][/caption]The Brunello Riserva is the most important type made by each winery in Montalcino, in fact the great Sangiovese wine is born to last in time and...


To listen or not to listen to the market and the guidebooks. The producers’ doubts

If up until 5 years ago a rating of 90/100 in the Wine Advocate or Wine Spectator opened up the market now the influence of the web grows and the desire for different winesRead for you by Donatella Cinelli Colombini [caption id="attachment_8577" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Wine-Advocate-Brunello-riserva-2007"][/caption]The theme is <<Who buys wine and...

A mystery regarding Italian wine we import South African bulk wine by the litre

The worldwide wine market for 2013 will reach 35 billion Dollars with an increase of more than 5% with respect to 2012, due to the massive increase in prices for cask wine [caption id="attachment_8510" align="alignleft" width="271" caption="bulck wine shop"][/caption]Read for you by Donatella Cinelli ColombiniThe scarce productions from the 2011 and...


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