“What is it like to take on a project like Franciacorta in America, to grow its base?” asks Italian wine trade veteran, writer, and photographer Alfonso Cevola on his blog this week.
His site, “On the Wine Trail in Italy,” is one of the most critically acclaimed and widely read wine blogs in the U.S. today.
“Over the past decade, one man has made that his mission, to win over sparkling wine lovers to Franciacorta. And his efforts have yielded positive results.”
“I’m sharing some panini and a bottle of Bellavista Rosé with Giulio Galli, the Franciacorta Guy, and we’re talking about his strategic plan. From the information given to him by the Franciacorta consorzio back in Italy, the wines he looks after, Bellavista and Contadi Castaldi, account for 40 percent of the sales of Franciacorta in America. That would make him and the wineries he represents one big bad mother. He’s the guy with a business plan who has worked it for the past decade and, by most accounts, has been successful.”
“And while the two wineries are different (Bellavista is a premium brand that follows an estate grown model, in large part, and Contadi Castaldi depends on fruit bought from nearby farmers and is a value oriented brand) the Franciacorta Guy has found markets for both of these wines, in a wide array of channels, from top restaurants in New York, San Antonio and Los Angeles to big box retailers. Yes, that makes him a sell-out. And that is the plan, to sell out the wine that is allocated to America.”