English

THE JUDGES

The grand tasting for the valuation of the wines that will be featured in “5StarWines The Book 2017” will take place from March 31st to April 2nd, 2017 in Verona, with the aim to give a valuable contribution to the world of Italian wine on an international scale. This unique wine guide will feature the wines that were given a score above or equal to 90/100 by a internationally well recognized panel of experts during this year’s Vinitaly 2017.

The dates were strategically chosen, right before the opening of the 51st edition of VINITALY the International Wine and Spirits Exhibition (9th-12th April 2017, www.vinitaly.com) in order to immediately present the selected wines at the fair.

We would like to remind that all wine producing companies can be included in the “5StarWines The Book 2017”, not only wineries exhibiting at Vinitaly.

THE 5 STAR WINES 2017 TEAM

Ian D’Agata

ITALY

Ian D’Agata

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5 Star Wines CTO Scientific Director, Vinitaly International Academy.

Ian D’Agata, Scientific Director of the Vinitaly International Academy and Scientific Advisor to Vinitaly International, is an award winning writer and lecturer. His Native Wine Grapes of Italy was named 2015 Louis Roederer International Wine Awards Book of the Year. He’s been named Italy’s best wine writer, and one of the world’s eight best international wine writers by Les Plumes d’Or in 2016.

Ian D’Agata has been speaking and writing about wine for over twenty-five years. An award inning writer, his Native Wine Grapes of Italy (Ed. University of California Press) was recently named 2015 Louis Roederer International Wine Awards Book of the Year, the first time an Italian wien writer has ever won the award.

He is the Scientific Director of the Vinitaly International Academy and Scientific Advisor to Vinitaly International and lectures on wine culture and history in NYU’s Master’s Program in Food Sciences.

Ian is the Senior Editor and Head of Development of Europe and Asia of Vinous (USA), the Creative director of Collisioni, Italy’s largest music, literature and enogastronomy festival, and is the italian correspondent for China’s TasteSpirit lifestyle and wine webmagazine. He is actively involved in resurrecting forgotten old native wine grapes and having wine made from them again.

An award inning wine writer, he has bene named numerous times Italy’s best wine writer and was most recently (2016) nominated one of the world’s eight best international wine writers by Les Plumes d’Or, as voted upon by French wine estate owners and winemakers.

Stevie Kim

ITALY

Stevie Kim

As the Managing Director of Vinitaly International, Stevie Kim has launched and now leads a variety of new initiatives under the Vinitaly umbrella, including OperaWine, Vinitaly International Academy, Vinitaly Wine Club, VINO (Italian Wine Pavilion at Expo2015 Milano), HackWine, Vinitaly International Buyer Connect, Vinitaly International Importer Connect, HireMeVinitaly and Wine2Wine.

The head of Vinitaly’s strategic international arm, Stevie is committed to using innovative channels to communicate and celebrate “il vino italiano” abroad – with a creative emphasis on social media – always with an eye towards helping Italian producers sell one more of bottle of wine.

She travels frequently around to world spreading the gospel of Italian wine, focusing on the US, Russia – and most of all, China.

She has two children, not counting her husband.

General Chairman

Paolo Basso

SWITZERLAND

Paolo Basso

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Association de la Sommellerie Internationale, World’s Best Sommelier 2013.

Paolo Basso, winner of the ASI Best Sommelier of the World Title in 2013, is an internationally active consultant for luxury hotel groups and Air France airline, and helps to promote Swiss wines in collaboration with the organization Swiss Wine Promotion. Born in Italy, he currently lives in Switzerland and he holds double Italian and Swiss citizenship.

Paolo Basso is one of only five sommeliers in the world to have won both the European and global titles for ‘Best Sommelier’ and among the rare few sommeliers to have reached for the eighths time the final level of an international competition. In 2014, the Grand Cru Committee of Italy, the most prestigious wine producers association in the country, crowned him ‘Sommelier of the Year’.

Member of the jury of the most prestigious international tasting competition he also works as lecturer and wine teacher at the School of Wine in Changins and Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne in Switzerland and at the Worldsom Sommelier Academy of Bordeaux, and has been guest speaker at many seminars and gastronomy events.

He currently start a new activity as a wine producer in Switzerland, dedicating his first wine, Il Rosso di Chiara, to his daughter, and launching a line of Italian wines with its own label. He also runs his own wine consulting company Paolo Basso Wine in Lugano, Switzerland.

Bernard Burtschy

FRANCE

Bernard Burtschy

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Chief, Le Figaro Vin.

Bernard Burtschy is a wine columnist for Le Figaro (a French newspaper, and Internet site) and for several magazines in the French press (Paris-MatchVigneronAmateur de Vins et Spiritueux) and abroad (Wands in Japan, Feinschmecker in Germany). 

He is also President of the French Wine Press and Permanent Member of the Grand Jury Européen(the European wine tasting group).

Robert Joseph

UK

Robert Joseph

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Editor at Large, Meininger’s Wine Business International.

 

 

Pedro Ballesteros Torres MW

SPAIN

Pedro Ballesteros Torres MW

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Master of Wine.

Pedro Ballesteros Torres is a Master of Wine, writes regularly for many wine journals and magazines and he was the chair of many international wine competitions. He gives hundred lectures and tutored tastings all over the world in Spanish, English, French and Italian.

Pedro Ballesteros Torres got his Agrofood Engineer Degree, as well as his Master Degree in Viticulture & Oenology, at Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. He got the WSET Diploma in Belgium and the Weinakademiker certificate in Germany and Austria, and in London he became member of the Institute of Masters of Wine. He followed other wine specialisation studies at Jerez, Beaune, Napa Valley and Bordeaux.

He is columnist at Planeta Vino (Spain), Libre BelgiqueDe MorgenDernière Heure (Belgium), writes regularly for Decanter (UK), Selectus Wineselmundovino.com (Spain) and writes occasionally for magazines in Switzerland, Italy, France and USA. He was the co-Chair for Spain and for Sherry at Decanter World Wine Awards (UK), and a Chair and Senior judge at international wine competitions such as Concours Mondial BruxellesBacchusCopa Jerez (Spain), Mundus Vini(Germany), and others in Portugal, Czech Republic, Italy, France, etc.

He was Elected Member of the Governing Council of the Institute of Masters of Wine, the Council of the Spanish Taster Union and the Board of the International Federation of Wine Journalists, and a Member of the Advisory Board of the Basque Culinary Centre. Expert at OIV for Spain, he has given several hundred lectures and tutored tastings all over the world and he works in Spanish, English, French and Italian.

Panel Chairman

Stephen Brook

UK

Stephen Brook

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Decanter Contributing Editor.

Stephen Brook has been writing about wine for 30 years, has published fifteen books on wine, and has been a Contributing Editor of Decanter magazine for twenty years. 

 

Levi Dalton

USA

Levi Dalton

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Host of the I’ll Drink to That! Podcast and Former Sommelier at Some of America’s Most Prestigious Restaurants.

Levi Dalton has had a long career working as a sommelier in some of the most distinguished and acclaimed dining rooms in America. He has served wine to guests of Restaurant Daniel, Masa, and Convivio, all in Manhattan. Levi has also contributed articles on wine themes to publications such as The Art of Eating, Wine & Spirits magazine, Bon Appetit online, Eater and Eater NY. For several years now he has been the host of the I’ll Drink to That! podcast, which has an extensive listenership throughout the world for the in-depth interviews that Levi conducts.

 

Laura De Pasquale MS

USA

Laura De Pasquale MS

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Master Sommelier and Vice President and General Manager, Stacole Fine Wines.

Laura De Pasquale, Master Sommelier, is a Leading Executive in Fine Wine Distribution in the USA and an experienced educator and wine competition judge with a long resume of accolades. Her current project is developing a new Fine Wine concept for Southern Wine & Spirits called Artisanal Fine Wines.

 

Vincenzo Donatiello

ITALY

Vincenzo Donatiello

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Head Sommielier, Piazza Duomo – Three Michelin Star Restaurant.

Vincenzo Donatiello is the Restaurant Manager and Head Sommelier of the Three Michelin Piazza Duomo Restaurant in Alba, Italy. He was recently recognized as the Best Headwaiter by the Restaurant and Hotels Guide of the Touring Club.

From Basilicata, sommelier, 30 years old, he is raised in Apulia, where he attended the Catering Institute of Vieste, and in Romagna, where he had his first work experiences. He has been the pupil of great sommeliers, such as Gianfranco Bolognesi, the Best Sommelier of Italy in 1974, and Roberto Gardini, the Best Sommelier of Italy in 1993.

He is currently the Restaurant Manager and Chef Sommelier of the Three Michelin Starred Piazza Duomo Restaurant in Alba, Italy, that was the number 27 in “The World’s 50 Best Restaurant”. He has been the Best Junior Sommelier of Italy in 2004 and the Best Sommelier of Romagna in 2010, Person of the 2013 Year for the Italia a Tavola magazine, and recently recognized as the Best Headwaiter by the Touring Club Restaurants and Hotels Guide.

Andy Howard MW

UK

Andy Howard MW

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Master of Wine (Ex Chief Buyer, Marks&Spencer).

Andy Howard became a Master of Wine in 2011. He worked for many years as a buyer for Marks & Spencer in the UK.

He now runs his own wine business, Vinetrades Ltd, and focuses on being a wine judge for DecanterBacchus and The International Wine Challenge, and a wine writer for Decanter and Jancis Robinson.

Natasha Hughes MW

UK

Natasha Hughes MW

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Master of Wine.

Natasha Hughes graduated as a Master of Wine in 2014, winning four out of the seven prizes awarded that year, including the Outstanding Achievement Award.

Natasha began her wine trade career as deputy editor for Decanter’s website. She left in 2001 to begin freelancing as a journalist, specialising in wine and food, and has written for numerous publications, including Decanter, Square Meal, Imbibe, Australian Gourmet Traveller Wine, Harpers, Off Licence News and Drinks Business. Her online work has been published by jancisrobinson.com, timatkin.com and wine-pages.com.

In 2015, Natasha was a finalist in the inaugural Pio Cesare Food and Wine Writer award, one of the categories of the prestigious Roederer Awards. She was shortlisted for articles focusing on pairing wines with Asian cuisines.

Natasha consults for restaurants, private clients, wine producers and generic bodies. She is a panel chair at the International Wine Challenge and Imbibe’s Sommelier Wine Awards. She has also chaired the judging at Georgia’s National Wine Competition, and been a member of judging panels around the world (France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Germany and the Czech Republic).

In addition, Natasha hosts wine events, seminars and tutored tastings for private clients and members of the wine trade, and leads trips to wine regions for private clients.

Kathy Morgan MS

USA

Kathy Morgan MS

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Master Sommelier.

Kathy Morgan is a Washington D.C. based Master Sommelier, educator and speaker. She has over 15 years of restaurant sommelier experience, and is a frequent wine competition judge and speaker at wine events worldwide.

 

Sebastian Payne MW

UK

Sebastian Payne MW

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Master of Wine (and Chief Buyer, The Wine Society).

 

Michele Longo

ITALY

Michele Longo

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Curator, Winecult.it (Co-curator Italian Best Wines Guide).

Michele Longo is the curator of Winecult.it and the co-curator of the Italian Best Wines Guide. He writes for the magazine Barolo&Co and he has always been interested in the human side of wine, the stories, the terroir, the traditions and the voices of producers.

Wine writer and certified sommelier, Michele’s first contact with the world of wine came in the late ’90s. He has always been interested in the human side of wine and his interviews have a very personal ring to them.

In 2008, he joined the New Wine Journal, a magazine managed by Ian D’Agata. From 2011 to 2013, he worked – first as a taster, then as deputy-curator– to the D’Agata & Comparini Guide to Italy’s Best Wines. In 2014, he picked up the baton from Ian and now he is the co-curator of the Guide Italy’s Best Wines (Comparini-Longo).

He currently writes for the magazine Barolo &Co, where he covers everything on the historical appellations of Piedmont: the stories, the terroir, traditions and the voices of producers. He is the curator of WineCult.it, a wine and food website borne out of the desire to bring together two passions: wine and culture.  Here he has a column, Wine Voice, where he recounts the thoughts and stories of the wine producers, through their voice and their “music”.

Igor Ryjenkov MW

CANADA

Igor Ryjenkov MW

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Master of Wine (Category Manager, European Wine Portfolio, Liquor Control Board of Ontario).

Igor Ryjenkov is the Canada’s first Master of Wine, attaining this highly respected credential in 2003. He currently works as a European Wine Buyer for Liquor Control Board of Ontario, Canada.

Igor Ryienkov has been a European Wine Buyer for Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) for 16 years, spending the first seven in retail as a Product Consultant in two largest LCBO locations in Ontario. The next seven years he was one of the buyers for the LCBO fine wine division, vintages, looking after the European portfolio there.

He transitioned into his current role, overseeing the regular wines LCBO portfolio in 2014. Igor has contributed to or edited a number of wine books, judges, mentors and travels to wine destinations and not only on business.

Monty Waldin

UK

Monty Waldin

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Decanter (and Author of 13 books and Guides on Natural Wines).

Monty Waldin became the first wine writer to specialize in organic and biodynamic wines in the mid-1990s, and writes the entries on organic, biodynamic and natural wine for the Oxford Companion to Wine (ed. Jancis Robinson MW OBE). 

He has worked in vineyards and wineries in both hemispheres, and was the subject of Chateau Monty, the first TV series to follow the making of a biodynamic wine from pruning to bottling for Britain’s Channel Four in 2008.

Bruce Wallner MS

CANADA

Bruce Wallner MS

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Master Sommelier (and Owner, Sommelier Factory).

 

Michael Palij MW

UK

Michael Palij MW

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Master of Wine and Managing Director of Winetraders Ltd.

Michael Palij is an adventurer, businessman, and one of only 313 Masters of Wine worldwide.  A Canadian, Michael emigrated to the UK in 1989 and has worked in the wine trade ever since.  He passed the Master of Wine examination in 1995 and is now a leading authority on the wines of Italy.  Michael lectures around the world but is also an importer, consultant, writer and an accomplished sailor and mountaineer.  Michael’s publisher is Dorling Kindersley.  He lives in Oxfordshire.

 

Massimiliano Apollonio

ITALY

Massimiliano Apollonio

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Winemaker.

Since 1995, Massimiliano Apollonio, Winemaker,is the Administrator of Apollonio Winery in Monteroni di Lecce. He is the President of the Assoenologi Department of Puglia, Basilicata and Calabria, Advisor at “Movimento Turismo del Vino Puglia” and Professor at Onav. He traveled a lot in Italy and abroad, acquiring experience in wine sensory analysis. 

 

Senior Judges

Johan Larsson

SWEDEN

Johan Larsson

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Sommelier and wine buyer for Systembolaget.

Johan Larsson’s 20 years in the wine trade has involved a variety of positions, including sommelier for Stockholm’s top restaurants, key account and product management at different Swedish wine importing companies, and a year as assistant winemaker at Mas de Daumas Gassac in the Languedoc. He has also been head steward to the King and Queen of Sweden, and he now manages the Royal Wine Cellars, conducts tastings with the King and Queen, and provides advice on food and wine pairing for state banquets. In November 2010, Larsson joined Systembolaget as wine buyer where he currently is responsible for Italy and Austria.

 

Luzia Schrampf

AUSTRIA

Luzia Schrampf

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Via Wine Ambassador, Wine Writer for Der Standard et. al. and Wine Educator.

Luzia Schrampf is a freelance wine journalist based near Vienna, Austria. She teaches at the Wine Academy of Austria, which is closely linked to WSET in London. She holds a WSET Diploma and she recently passed the exam for Italian Wine Ambassador of the Vinitaly International Academy. She works for different wine guides and is a wine judge for several national and international wine competitions. 

Luzia Schrampf studied translation at the University of Vienna.  In 2003, she passed the Diploma of the London-based Wine and Spirit Education Trust WSET at the Wine Academy of Rust, in Austria. Since 2000, she writes for the Austrian daily Der Standard about wine and wine related topics, and she contributes on a regular basis to the Austrian wine magazine Wein.Pur and to the Slow Food Magazine in her country. She has contributed to several newspaper and magazines, writing on wine matters in English and German. She also works for different wine guides and participates as a judge in national and international wine competitions. Luzia is also a teacher at the Wine Academy of Austria, closely linked to WSET in London, and in December 2015 she passed the exam for Italian Wine Ambassador of the Vinitaly International Academy.

Michael Garner

UK

Michael Garner

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Author, Wine Writer.

Michael Garner has worked in the wine business for over 35 years, specializing in Italian wine for more than 30 of them. He is the co-author of Barolo: Tar and Roses, a regular contributor to Decanter, and for many years taught for the WSET. Michael is co-owner of Italian Wine Specialists Tria Wines Limited with business partner Paul Merritt. He lives in rural Devon.

 

Nicholas Paris MW

USA

Nicholas Paris MW

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Director of Global Sourcing at E.&J. Gallo Winery.

Nicholas Paris is a Director of Global Sourcing of European wines for the E.&J. Gallo Winery in the US. He is also a Master of Wine, Advanced Sommelier and Certified Wine Educator and frequently judges at international wine competitions and educates consumers and trade throughout the world on wines and spirits. 

 

Janna Rijpma

NETHERLANDS

Janna Rijpma

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Multiple Wine Book Author and Owner, Ennovision International Media Company

Wine writer and Consultant for over twenty years, Janna Rijpma is the Owner of NOMOH Wine Consulting Web Magazine. She has published five books for the series The Wine Guide for Business People.

After a long career as an Executive Producer in Television, Janna Rijpma graduated as a Vinoloog in 1996 at the Dutch Wine Academy. After writing many articles and columns about wine and food in magazines and newspapers, she ‘delivered’ five books of The Wine Guide for Business People for Het Financieele Dagblad. She now mainly writes, consults and creates and is traveling to the wine fields all over the world, where especially upcoming wine areas have her full attention. She teaches often about her favorite wine subjects, burgundy, champagne and northern Italy.

Since 2015, she is owner of www.nomoh.nl, the world of the senses that connects wine and food. Her activities includes NOMOH experience, NOMOH activities, NOMOH consultancy & NOMOH concepts. This year she will celebrate her 20 years in the wine business.

Massimo Claudio Comparini

ITALY

Massimo Claudio Comparini

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Chairman, EarthLab Precision Agriculture and Viticulture (Head of the Best Italian Wines Guide)

Massimo Claudio Comparini is a sommellier and wine writer with more than 25 years of experience. He holds a Master degree in Electrical and Aerospace Engineering and he is graduated in Strategy at GSB Stanford University.

Co-manager for many years of the International Wine Academy of Rome, today he is the Director of the Italy’s Best Wines Guide. He has a deep knowledge of Italian wines, French and new world wines and wine marketing, and he teaches technology, innovation management and wine business in many universities in Italy and abroad.

Fabio Turchetti

ITALY

Fabio Turchetti

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Wine and Food Journalist, Head Wine Columnist of Il Messaggero.

Fabio Turchetti is a wine journalist from Rome and a columnist of Il Messaggero wine section.

He has been writing for many years for several newspaper headlines, and today is the head of the Lazio section of the Slow Wine Guide, as well as an author of many books about wine. 

 

Maurizio Castelli

ITALY

Maurizio Castelli

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Winemaker.

 

Emiliano Falsini

ITALY

Emiliano Falsini

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Winemaker.

Emiliano Falsini is an Italian winemaker and works as a consulting oenologist in many high-level vinicultural areas of Italy.

Born in Tuscany and graduated with a Diploma as agronomist from a technical high school, Emiliano Falsini continued his studies completing a doctorate in Viticulture and Oenology from the University of Florence. He studied also for short period at the University of Bordeaux, and worked in California, New Zealand and Argentina. Afterward, he worked as a consulting oenologist in Tuscany, as part of Gruppo Matura.

He currently carries on many project in various and high-level vinicultural areas of Italy, such as Barolo, Chianti Classico, Bolgheri, Montepulciano, Montefalco, Marche, Abruzzo, Emilia-Romagna, Irpinia, Sicily, Basilicata, etc.

Barbara Tamburini

ITALY

Barbara Tamburini

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Winemaker.

Barbara Tamburini graduated in Viticulture and Oenology from the University of Pisa in 2002 after having already obtained a University Diploma in Food Technology (Viticulture & Oenology) in 2000. During her time at university she was able to undertake various apprenticeships with Tuscan wine producers and subsequently to initiate her working career as a freelance oenologist in 1999 with some important consultancies. Her consultancies, initially exclusively in Tuscany, have grown year on year to include others in Umbria, Piedmont, Lombardy, Emilia Romagna and Sicily.

It was during her periods of study that she had the good fortune to meet Vittorio Fiore, a fellow oenologist of long experience and international repute who she came to consider as her ‘mentor’ and ‘teacher’. It was with him that she began a collaborative working arrangement which continues even today.

Enlivened by an intense professional curiosity, she has been able to succeed in a multiplicity of directions passing from viticulture to oenology, from Sangiovese to Pinot Noir, from Merlot to Nebbiolo and Barbera, to Aleatico, from Vermentino to Pinot Blanc and to Ansonica, from Moscato Passito to Vinsanto. Whilst doing this, she pays constant attention to ensure that wines express the character of their provenance both in terms of the individual producer and the area of production whilst still aiming to achieve the highest possible quality and address the expectations of the consumer.

Furthermore, she does not ignore market issues. Given her increasing notoriety, she has the advantage of being in regular contact with a wide network of leading experts both in Italy and, increasingly, abroad who have specific experience in the distribution and marketing of Italian wines in the world.

As a result, the wine sector press comes increasingly to Barbara for news, for her views and for information considered to be of value and importance.

Currently, Barbara Tamburini is consultant oenologist for more than 15 different wine producers and has been the subject of more than 100 interviews and articles.

Goffredo Agostini

ITALY

Goffredo Agostini

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Winemaker.

Winemaker, freelancer. He started working in 1985 at the Ortona Winery in Abruzzo.

In 1988 he moved to Cantina Tollo where he stayed working for 15 years and collaborated as the Technical Director. In 2004 he started work as a consultant at the Matura Group. Currently he works as  a Winemaker consultant for Central and Southern Italian Wineries as well as in foreign countries. 

Franco Bernabei

ITALY

Franco Bernabei

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Winemaker.

 

Valentino Ciarla

ITALY

Valentino Ciarla

Winemaker.

Once his formal studies were over, he began a period of professional formation, working in Colli di Luni and Cinque Terre, and than making very important experiences in South Africa, Switzerland and France (Saint Emilion),  than he works for Marchesi Antinori.  Since 2004 he is part of Gruppo Matura,  working as consulting winemaker in Tuscany,  Umbria, Puglia, Lazio and Emilia Romagna, having the opportunity to make wine in some of the more interesting Italian Terroir.

Abi Duhr

LUXEMBOURG

Abi Duhr

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Leading Luxembourg Wine Writer, Wine Producer and Journalist for VINO (Luxembourg Wine Magazine)

 

Lorenzo Landi

ITALY

Lorenzo Landi

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Winemaker.

Lorenzo Landi is a winemaker and wine consultant from Italy. Graduated in Agrarian Sciences and holding a Master in Oenology and a University Diploma in Oenology and Viticulture, he worked for ten years as a responsible oenologist for several companies in Tuscany and Umbria, among which Fattoria del CerroColpetrone and La Poderina. Since 2000, he works as a wine consultant across several regions of Italy, such as Tuscany, Umbria, Friuli and Sicily.

 

Judges

Gurvinder Bhatia

CANADA

Gurvinder Bhatia

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VIA Italian Wine Expert, Editor for Quench Magazine.

Gurvinder Bhatia is the Wine Editor for Quench MagazineEdmonton Journal and Global TV. He works as Wine Buyer and Director of Wine Business Development & Education of the UnWined wine boutiques.  He is also the founder and Director of Northern Lands, the Canada’s largest all-Canadian wine and culinary festival, and is certified by Vinitaly International Academy as an Italian Wine Expert. 

Graduated in law at the Washington University of St. Louis, Gurvinder also earned his Master Degree in Business Administration (MBA) with honors from Bradley University in Illinois.

Nowadays, Gurvinder is the wine editor for Quench magazine, wine columnist for the Edmonton Journal and Global TV, a wine and food consultant, international wine judge and the head wine buyer and Director of Wine, Business Development & Education for the UnWined wine boutiques.

Gurvinder is also the founder and director of Northern Lands, Canada’s largest all-Canadian wine and culinary festival, and is certified by Vinitaly International Academy as an Italian Wine Expert. In 2015, Gurvinder was named by Alberta Venture Magazine as one of Alberta’s 50 Most Influential People.

Michaela Morris

CANADA

Michaela Morris

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VIA Italian Wine Expert, Wine Writer and WSET Educator.

Michaela Morris is a wine writer, educator and presenter based in Vancouver, Canada. She sits on wine panels and judges wine competitions both locally and abroad and is a certified Italian Wine Expert through Vinitaly International Academy.

 

Will Predhomme

CANADA

Will Predhomme

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Wine Writer and Professional Sommelier, Owner of Predhomme Consulting.

 

Pascal Tinari

ITALY

Pascal Tinari

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Head sommelier, One Michelin star Villa Maiella Restaurant

 

Tommaso Mascolo

ITALY

Tommaso Mascolo

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Head Sommelier at One Michelin Star Indaco Restaurant

 

Davide Buongiorno

ITALY

Davide Buongiorno

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Head Sommelier, Del Cambio – One Michelin Star Restaurant

Head Sommelier, Del Cambio – One Michelin Star Restaurant. 

Davide Buongiorno started his career as a Sommelier at the age of 30, entering directly into the world of Stellar Restaurants: Venezia al Met with Corrado Fasolato, then Piemonte La Ciao of Tornavento and also Toscana da Caino, with a brief time at Tirolo with Alfred Millers Schoneck.

After having won two awards in London, first at Lansbourgh with Heinz Beck then at The Square, he then moved to Jersey Island where he conquered a Michelin Star restaurant in only 4 months, thanks to a phenomenal team. As a Head Sommelier now for 5 years, Davide is consolidating his managerial and enological dotes with passion and dedication.

Alessio Spadone

ITALY

Alessio Spadone

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Head Sommelier, La Bandiera Restaurant.

Growing up in the family business, he very soon became interested in discovering the restaurant sector. At first he was wandering alone between the tables then deepened his knowledge about wine and everything that surrounds it. At age 16 he attended the AIS course, and conducted his first experience at Enoteca Pinchiorri. After a year, he returned with a great desire to put into practice all that he had learned.

Since 2009 he manages the cellar of the family restaurant and is always careful to include the most sought after news of the market,  tackling, occasionally, educational trips in the most famous Italian and foreign cellars.

Matteo Bernabei

ITALY

Matteo Bernabei

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Winemaker.

 

Stefano Chioccioli

ITALY

Stefano Chioccioli

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Winemaker.

Graduated in agricultural sciences in 1984, he defines himself as an agronomist before as a winemaker. During the first years of study at the Faculty of Agriculture at the University of Florence, he is attracted by the various disciplines of the world of agriculture

Then comes the shock for viticulture, and for oenology immediately after. He graduated with 110 with honors. Immediately employed as Production Manager by Ruffino, where he will remain for seven years, as first in the establishment of Pontassieve and then in the country to follow the proliferation of corporate ownership. Chioccioli himself defines these seven years as formidable years because they allow him to unravel the complex issues surrounding viticulture and winemaking that will prove to be crucial in his professional experience. Meanwhile, his sons Niccolò and Enrico, were born, today 31 and 27 years old, the first one graduated in viticulture and oenology in Florence in 2009, the second one graduated in law in Milan and Master Distiller
In 1992 Stefano Chioccioli starts to take its first steps alone as winemaker consultant.. It is an exciting period of renewal in the world of wine. He tries to turn the page, to renew the vineyards, to focus on a new approach that brings wealth, value and quality to an area rich in potential but for long time mortified. Since then, the escalation is unstoppable: new consulting and new successes in Italy and abroad, very new wine brands or old brands to be revaluated. Here comes the 1995, an important year, not only for the born of her daughter Ginevra, but also for the begin of new consultings, which still represents nowdays pillars of the italian wine. He has been working for more than 25 years for prestigious estates in Italy, France and Hungary. The wines he signed during his consulting activities have won many awards such as: over 100 wines with three glasses on Gambero Rosso guide, many 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98 points in magazines like Wine Spectator, Wine Enthusiast, Wine Advocat, up to the 100/100 is awarded by Robert Parker and Wine Spectator.
He is a member of numerous organizations dedicated to viticulture and oenology and various committees of tasting. He is regularly invited to give lectures at the most important universities of enology in Italy and he is a strong voice in the conferences and the events dedicated to the Wine world.

Diego Dequigiovanni

BRAZIL

Diego Dequigiovanni

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Owner and Co-founder of Luogo Divino Enoteca.
Alessandra Fedi

UK

Alessandra Fedi

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WSET Educator.

Italian sommelier and WSET certified educator, Alessandra Fedi lives now between Milan and London, where she earned the Diploma of the Wine and Spirit Education Trust.

Alessandra is a brilliant lecturer and speaker and conducts educational show tastings for the consumers at special events in restaurants, theatres and fairs both in English and Italian. She has also expanded her international boutique wine business through her website (www.alessandrafedi.com) into the fields of consultancy and education for the trade and luxury wine tours for the amateur.

Junior Judges

Bernardo Silveira

BRAZIL

Bernardo Silveira

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Technical Director at Zahil Importadora, Instructor at The Wine School, Owner of Prensa Enogastronomia.

 

Elise Vandenberg

USA

Elise Vandenberg

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Lead Sommelier at Milos, VIA Italian Wine Ambassador and Certified Sommelier.

Elise Vandenberg is a Vinitaly International Academy Ambassador of Italian Wine and a Certified Sommelier. Elise is also the Lead Sommelier at Estiatorio Milos in Las Vegas, NV. She enjoys traveling to Italy to study wine. 

 

JC Viens

HONG KONG

JC Viens

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VIA Italian Wine Ambassador, Deputy Wine Editor for SpiritodiVino Asia.

JC Viens is SpiritodiVino Asia Deputy Editor. Gourmand and a Storyteller, JC visited vineyards on five continents to learn the human stories behind the wines. As a WSET Certified Educator and a Vinitaly Academy Italian Wine Ambassador, he holds regular classes on wine tasting and on Italy. 

 

Jeremy Ennis

CANADA

Jeremy Ennis

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Sommelier, Langdon Hall – Relais & Châteaux.

 

Vanessa Green

AUSTRALIA

Vanessa Green

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Director Crimson Wine, Wine Director at Apples and Pears Restaurant Group.

Vanessa Green is the Managing Director of Crimson Cartwheel, as well as a wine educator and consultant. She judges at wines shows in Australia and New Zealand, she is a student of WSET and Italian Native Grape Varietal and an advisor to Slow Food International.

Vanessa says discovering, enjoying and sharing great wines with clients, friends and guests is the most rewarding aspect of her work in the wine industry.

Current key projects she is working on include sourcing and importing wines from around the world to Australia and New Zealand, developing the cellars and wine lists for a selection of award winning restaurants across Asia Pacific and running a consumer based wine education and appreciation program in the same region.

In her spare time, Vanessa judges at wine shows in the region, is a student of Italian Native Grape Varietals, a Commandeur of the Commanderie de Bordeaux, an advisor to Slow Food Internationaland involved with the Ordre des Coteaux de Champagne. Her personal study continues with the WSET diploma.

Livia Merlo

ITALY

Livia Merlo

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Freelance Wine Writer
Luca Di Vita

ITALY

Luca Di Vita

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Sommelier and Co-owner of the Osteria alle Testiere

He’s born, lives and works in Venice.

Co-owner of the Osteria alle Testiere of Venice since 1997 (The World’s 50 Best Restaurants according to the magazine Restaurant and Top 100 Restaurants Worldwide according to Foodie guide).

Professional Sommelier (Italian Association Sommelier awarded).

Master of Food beer, olive oil and cheese, courses held by Slow Food Italy.

Author of Venice, food and wine (A table, à Venise) published by Lineadacqua.

He has contributed to numerous articles and radio broadcasts made by journalists of: The Wall Street Journal Europe, The Sunday Times, Etoile, The New York Times, Der Feinschmecker, Saveur, Gourmet, Travel Telegraph, The Guardian, Sphere, Louis Vuitton City Gude, InTime Magazine, Radio France Culture.

Winemaker for passion, leads a tiny vineyard property in Valdobbiadene (TV) and obtains’s Vineyard Ada, 1000 bottles of Prosecco “sur lie”, an honest wine.

Hayley Black

USA

Hayley Black

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Wine Director at Tutta Bella, VIA Italian Wine Ambassador.
Simone Romano

ITALY

Simone Romano

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Restaurant Manager, Tordomatto.

Marina Olwen Fogarty

ITALY

Marina Olwen Fogarty

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Export Manager, Antonio Vallana e Figlio.

Marina is based in Alto Piemonte where she works as export manager for her family’s winery, Antonio Vallana e Figlio. She is a WSET certified wine educator and holds a PhD in philosophy.

Fabio Ciarla

ITALY

Fabio Ciarla

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Journalist, Sommelier and Blogger, Corriere del Vino, Enoagricola.

Born into a family of winemakers, he chose to break with tradition and become a journalist. Life, or fate, brought him back into the world of wine. He is a regular contributor to online newspapers like «Il Corriere del Vino», and he created «Enoagricola Blog», an innovative blog with Italian/English posts and downloadable podcasts.

He is a certified sommelier and instructor for FISAR (Italian Sommeliers Federation), and an events and wine tastings planner. He’s come to the conclusion that in this world, after all, he feels at home.

Giorgio D’Orazio

ITALY

Giorgio D’Orazio

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Journalist, Le Guide di Repubblica and Slow Wine.

Giorgio D’Orazio, born in Abruzzo in 1986, is an independent professional journalist working with many Italian newspapers. He is specialized in cultural journalism and food&wine. He cooperates with Le Guide di Repubblica and Slow Wine writing about wine and wine producers. 

 

Fabiana Gargioli

ITALY

Fabiana Gargioli

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Sommelier and Co-Titolare di Armando al Pantheon.

Sommelier and Co-Owner of Armando al Pantheon, roman historical restaurant, one of the best addresses representatives of the Roman culinary tradition (3 Gambero Rosso shrimp from 2014 to 2016 and Osteria Slow Food snail awarded from 2013)

Sommelier Professional (graduated in 2006 from ‘AIS Italian Sommelier Association)

In 2014/2015 she follows and completes the Master course of study Chianti Classico, held by Armando Castagno

Fabiana Gargioli is Armando al Pantheon’s head service and she takes care of the wine list of and is in charge of the winery purchases. Diligently participate in groups of tasting and studying with interest the Italian grape varieties.

In her  free  time she continued her professional training, visiting wineries. Love the direct contact with producers , Fabiana Gargioli considers the visit to the vineyard and winery, the first major element of evaluation to choose the wines to be included in the list and recount to their clients.

Fabiana is one of the founding member of Fiorano for kids, A nonprofit association that, through the production of a wine, collects funds necessary to support projects related to hospital “Bambino Gesù ” and other facilities.

Ramona Ragaini

ITALY

Ramona Ragaini

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Maître at Ristorante Andreina Loreto.

Since 2009 Ramona Ragaini is maître at Ristorante Andreina Loreto and chef Errico Recanati’s wife. Her passion is born by chance in a very crowded Sunday when she proposed to lend a hand to serve. Her desire to know the world of wine grows and she attended 3 AIS courses and since then, every day, she looks for more new territories and “new emotions that you can give with a chalice.” In fact, besides to welcome guests, she takes care of the wine list Andreina Restaurant and she is Marche delegate at “Noi di Sala”.

Assoenologi

Andreino Addis

ITALY

Andreino Addis

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Winemaker.
Massimiliano Apollonio

ITALY

Massimiliano Apollonio

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Winemaker.
Giuseppe Camilli

ITALY

Giuseppe Camilli

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Winemaker.
Carmine De Iure

ITALY

Carmine De Iure

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Winemaker.
Sandro Cavicchioli

ITALY

Sandro Cavicchioli

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Winemaker.
Alessandro Defilippi

ITALY

Alessandro Defilippi

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Winemaker.
Federico Defilippi

ITALY

Federico Defilippi

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Winemaker.
Alessandro Donà

ITALY

Alessandro Donà

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Winemaker.
Faustini Andrea

ITALY

Faustini Andrea

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Winemaker.
Stephan Filippi

ITALY

Stephan Filippi

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Winemaker.
Vincenza Folgheretti

ITALY

Vincenza Folgheretti

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Winemaker.
Alberto Lazzarino

ITALY

Alberto Lazzarino

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Winemaker.
Massimiliano Luison

ITALY

Massimiliano Luison

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Winemaker.
Patrizia Marenco

ITALY

Patrizia Marenco

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Winemaker.
Goffredo Pasolli

ITALY

Goffredo Pasolli

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Winemaker.
Paolo Peira

ITALY

Paolo Peira

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Winemaker.
Nicolò Poma

ITALY

Nicolò Poma

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Winemaker.
Josef Romen

ITALY

Josef Romen

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Winemaker.
Loris Vazzoler

ITALY

Loris Vazzoler

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Winemaker.
Pierluigi Zama

ITALY

Pierluigi Zama

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Winemaker.