11 March 2014
New York. The Consorzio del Vino Nobile's first 2014 trip to the United States began in the Big Apple. The Montepulciano delegation, which included, as well as the Consorzio, representatives of the municipal authorities and the Strada del Vino Nobile organisation, hosted two intense days of meetings, workshops, seminars and tastings in Manhattan.
The New York program opened with a seminar at the Italian Chamber of Commerce where Valdichiana tourism operators were apprised of American travellers' preferences and expectations. This was a fruitful opportunity to really get to know our future guests and understand how we can give them an even warmer welcome to Tuscany in the future. This was followed by what has now become the traditional Gambero Rosso event: a workshop for importers and journalists from the specialist press followed by a tasting event. The second day in New York was spent in meetings with American tour operators, followed by a lunch with more than 40 tourism operators, journalists and other wine and tourism professionals, during which there were two presentations: one introducing the Sistema Montepulciano, the other presenting all the attractions the Valdichiana Senese has to offer, demonstrating how, together, they offer visitors a complete, integrated experience.
Philadelphia. The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) is one of America's most popular museums. For the first time in its long and illustrious history, the museum hosted a wine tasting event, together with a presentation of a territory, set among the exhibits on display in the museum. The wine was the Nobile di Montepulciano, and the territory was the Valdichiana Senese with its wealth of environmental, cultural and tourism resources. Ben McAdams, the County Mayor, was there to welcome guests in person, and to sign a cooperation agreement between Montepulciano and Salt Lake City, a wonderful outcome for the second stop of the American tour.
The tasting at the PAFA, with stalls presenting samples from the eight participating Montepulciano producers (Boscarelli, Casale Daviddi, La Braccesca, La Ciarliana, Le Bèrne, Montemercurio, Salcheto and the Vecchia Cantina), was attended by more than 130 invitees, including restaurateurs, distributors and importers, as well as a few local tour operators and journalists.
Salt Lake City. Ben McAdams, the County Mayor, was there to welcome his guests in person, and to sign a cooperation agreement between Montepulciano and Salt Lake City. The declaration highlighted the traits and values that the two cities share, particularly the quality of life and the pleasure deriving from the enjoyment of the two cities' respective inexhaustible natural resources and the beauty of their landscapes. Through the meeting of two cultures, the agreement looks forward to an ever-closer relationship to promote tourism, a central element of both cities' economies.
The busy day concluded with dinner at Valter's Osteria, run by the Tuscan restaurateur Valter Nassi, who welcomed his guests with traditional Montepulciano dishes accompanied with excellent wines from the territory. Valter's twenty years of experience, and his relentless promotion of all things "Made in Tuscany" in the USA has earned him the honorary title of Montepulciano and Vino Nobile Ambassador, joining the select few distinguished individuals who have been similarly honoured, such as the musician Enrique Mazzola and the rock star Omar Pedrini.