My Prowein 2022

My Prowein 2022

Prowein in Düsseldorf is a hot spot full of “wine” inspiration. It is one of the most important wine and spirits fair in Central Europe. Prowein always takes place on 3 days from Sunday till Tuesday.

After two years of cancellation in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID pandemic, ProWein returned to Düsseldorf on 15-17 May, 2022.

This year I have decided to visit the international wine fair again. I only had one day of the fair to spend. It was an intense day and perhaps not enough to do everything, but I enjoyed it very much.

Personally, Prowein gives me the opportunity to discover different wines and wineries of the world. For me, tasting as much as possible is fun and it the best way to learn about wines.

I started tasting wines from Trentino and I ended up with Tempranillo and Verdejo wines from Casilla y Léon. I cannot remember exactly how much different wines I have tasted but the ones I remember were wines from the New World, Italy, Spain, Portugal and France.

Powerful dry wines with high tannin levels, high alcohol and fruit concentration such as Barolo and Médoc were one of my favorites!

And here are some of my favorite images I took while visiting ProWein:

Outstanding wines from Chilean Cabernet Sauvignons.

Interesting to try different California Chardonnay’s aged with oak chips in stainless steel. One Chardonnay tasted different from the next. From apples, lemons to something sweeter.

Having the opportunity to taste many Champagnes is amazing. Vintage Champagne Blanc de Blancs 2006. A Champagne only made from Chardonnay grapes. Cheers!

Sicilian wines! Grillo is a widely planted Sicilian white grape. The grape is well suited to hot and dry climates. Grillo is used commonly in a variety of still white wines.

The Nero d’Avola instead is a renowned indigenous red grape variety in Sicily. The grape is also known as “Calabrese”. This grape loves heat as well, just like the Grillo. The wine has character. It is a strong and medium to full bodied red wine.

Wines from the PIWI grape varieties. Ever heard of it? I didn’t, until I met Enrico from Cantina Terre di Ger in Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy. PIWI grapes are fungal resistant. The wines taste good or even excellent.

The Verdejo wines from Rueda in the Castilla Y León region (Spain) are popular white wines around the world. I explored some nice wines from an organic and unique bodega.

The atmosphere at ProWein is welcoming, personable and educative. It is a great opportunity to meet new people and to talk about wine and business.

See you next year!

 

Vineyard Establishment – winemaking project Bolgheri Tuscany

Vineyard Establishment – winemaking project Bolgheri Tuscany

We are at the end of the online course DipWSET4 – D1.

Uffa..

It were intense weeks with lots of posts, research, questions, wine tastings and group activities.

Many projects required a lot of effort!

In the first week of our course we needed to work alone on our vineyard establishment proposal. I choose for the wine area Bolgheri in Tuscany. This is my proposal I have submitted in the first week of our wine course.

Happy reading!

Bolgheri

I choose the territory of Bolgheri (Livorno) along the Etruscan coast, at the foot of the gentle Tuscan hills and a few miles from the sea. 

The climate along the coast in Tuscany is more maritime than central Tuscany. The summers are dry, sunny and breezy. The weather is influenced by the sea. Temperatures in winter time are around 8-10 degrees, and reach rarely zero or less.

The sea and Apennine mountains moderate the temperatures in summer period. The driest months in Tuscany are July and August.

Bolgheri Rosso DOC

Bolgheri Rosso DOC is a blend of black grape varieties. The red wine can be made in different styles. I will plant the following grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Sangiovese.

The black grape varieties need sunlight and heat to ripen fully. The grapes do not ripen at the same time. Merlot ripens earlier than Cabernet Sauvignon and Sangiovese for instance. The harvest of the grapes is spread out.

Vine training system black grape varieties: cane pruned (single guyot), cordon trained. The vine’s cane and shoots are tied to the trellis for light and air circulation. Summer pruning will hardly take place as the leaves protect the berries from sunburn in (warm) summer conditions.

The soil is calcareous and contains a mix of rocks. There is a good drainage, which is important for grape growing. The altitude of the vineyards are about 100 – 400 m above sea level and the slopes are facing southwest.

The wine is full bodied with ripe red and black fruits, medium-high tannin, high acidity and high alcohol. Long aftertaste.

Suited for aging.

Super Tuscan wines have gained popularity in Italy and abroad since the 20th century. Especially the red wines. The wines are prestigious and sometimes also very expensive.

The average price for this wine is Euro 25.00*.
*average price of Sylvia Italy’s Rosso wine – not available in my shop.

Bolgheri Rosato DOC

The black grape varieties used for the rosé are Syrah, Merlot and Sangiovese. This wine is a blend and pairs good with fish dishes. For example with the local cacciucco from Livorno. 

Bolgheri Bianco DOC

For a white wine from the region I will plant Vermentino grapes. Vermentino is often vinified as a single variety but can also be blended with other white grape varieties such as Trebbiano Toscano.

The vine training system for the Vermentino grapes are cane pruned (guyot). The sea has a positive influence and gives Vermentino a mineral and aromatic character.

The Vermentino wine is an appetizer wine and pairs excellent with local fish dishes.

For both young wines the average price per bottle is Euro 13.00-15.00*.
*average price of Sylvia Italy’s Bianco wine – not available in my shop. 

Super Tuscan wines are produced also in other places in Tuscany, but Bolgheri is the birthplace of this wonderful wine.

Alla salute!

 

At home in Montepulciano

At home in Montepulciano

Lockdown in Italy

As we all know people in Italy have been staying at home since 9 March. Schools, shops, restaurants, bars and many offices are closed. Since then I only go out for a good reason: grocery shopping. I live nearby the Conad grocery. It’s only 5 minutes walking.

Not only people but also cars are in lockdown. Like my car. The battery is low. I cannot even unlock the doors by pressing the button. Not that I have plans to drive but for getting some heavy stuff home from the supermarket a car will do well. I don’t know how to fix this problem though but every problem has a solution!

It’s a very strange and hard period. I am doing ok. At the very beginning I watched the press conference at the Rai24 station every day. Now I hardly see it anymore. For me it’s fine now to stay updated by reading some Tweet news from two Dutch journalists in Rome.

Walking in Montepulciano

The last two days I was trying to get some walks and short runs nearby my house. I am allowed to do that only if I stay 200m away from home. I have run a piece with a face mask. It’s inconvenient. You can’t get fresh air. A face mask is not for runners. But in case the police stops me I have one with me.

I haven’t been fully recovered from my knee arthroscopy. My meniscus was very bad damaged because of the runnings. As doctor Ceppi told me so. I do my exercises every day to develop my leg muscles. It helps but it takes much longer to be back to my previous running shape. I guess..

Sylvia Italy

Risotto agli asparagi

I didn’t stop tasting wines and eating good food during the lockdown. Honestly since we are at home I prepare more often delightful dishes for myself.

I am not disappointed about my cooking! But I am always struggling with a good Carbonara… any tip?

Risotto agli asparagi

Wines

And yes I have good wines in my wine cellar. There’s no day without a good glass of wine. I do not only drink Sangiovese wines. As you might know Tuscany is known for it’s Sangiovese based wines.

Poggio alla Sala “il Parceto”

To improve my palate I recently purchased some nice wines from winery Piandaccoli in Florence. They make excellent Chardonnay-Malvasia and Rosé wines. These wines pair well with fish dishes, antipasti and pasta.

@ Home in Montepulciano

In Holland we say every disadvantage has it’s vantage. That’s true. I got to know new neighbors since I am at home. They are lovely people. We got friends. This is wonderful. I can’t wait to have a dinner or an appetizer with them. Hopefully soon!

WSET Study

I also started studying my WSET level 3 wine exam. Every time when I read new things about wine I realize that I love the world of wines. It is interesting to discover new wines from all over the world.

Knowing more about different grape varieties, how wines are made and how they might taste. I hope to be well prepared for the upcoming lessons and wine tastings.

WSET study level 3

Wine webshop

And the good news is, I am working on a new wine project. A friend of mine suggested me to realize a new wine adventure now the tourism in Tuscany is shut down.

An awesome idea! It is a lot of work, but I like it. I see this as a new career opportunity for myself with a lot of possibilities for Sylvia Italy in the nearby future.

Stay tuned!

Vasco Rosso wines from Tenuta Pian delle Ginestre

 

Wine and Spirit Education Trust

Wine and Spirit Education Trust

WSET

The Wine & Spirit Education Trust provides education and qualifications in wines for professionals and enthusiasts. Level 2 Award in Wines is an intermediate level qualification.

During the course we studied about wines, grape varieties of the world, the regions in which they are grown and the styles of wine they produce.

Through a combination of (a lot) wine tasting and theory we explored the quality, the style and how to describe the wines.

Emily O’ Hare

Our teacher for WSET level 2 is Emily O’Hare. Emily is wine writer, sommelier and she teaches WSET courses in Tuscany. Originally she’s from London but is now based in Siena.

Review

I personally enjoyed the wine study and the courses with Emily. We had a lovely group. Some participants were from my FISAR Sommelier course and some people were new. It was a nice experience and definitely a do thing.

I look forward to start soon with WSET level 3.

Diploma

I got my classification! I passed my exam. Result 94% and Grade Pass with distinction. Now I have two wonderful certificates, FISAR Sommelier and WSET level 2 Award in Wines.

I still need to learn a lot more about wines. But I have a lot of interest and I am passionate about wine. I live in a wine growing area and I work in the tourism and wine business.

The best is yet to come!

WSET diploma level 2

 

Official certified FISAR sommelier

Official certified FISAR sommelier

FISAR sommelier

In 2017 I started with the FISAR sommelier study with the aim of becoming a professional sommelier. My dream came true…

I have successfully passed all exams. I am an official certified sommelier now! FISAR is an official recognized diploma. They organise wine courses, tastings and exams throughout Italy.

Over the past three years Emiliano was our teacher. Every week we had guest speakers in our class to teach us about wine, and everything in between.

It was hard work because there’s a lot of information to know about wine.

Written and oral examination

The written exam contained multiple choice questions and open questions. FISAR (Federazione Italiana Sommelier Albergatori e Ristoratori) focuses on the understanding of wine and food pairing. A sommelier must know how to pair food with wine.

In the tasting and practical examination we tasted and evaluated the wine I choose: Vino Nobile di Montepulciano DOCG 2015 from the winery Fattoria del Cerro.

There were three examiners asking me questions on different topics. Emiliano and two colleagues assisted us before and after the exam. 

Fattoria del Cerro

Celebration dinner 

By the end of our oral exam we planned a nice dinner with lots of wine in restaurant La Solita Zuppa. We all were very happy and excited. 

La Solita Zuppa

La Solita Zuppa

FISAR Diploma

It wasn’t easy to get here. Being a Dutch native speaker and doing speaking and writing tests in an other language isn’t the easiest way to get your Italian sommelier degree.

FISAR sommelier

FISAR sommelier

FISAR sommelier together with Luca and Emiliano

Now that I am having my FISAR diploma I hunger for more. I want to keep on studying, tasting, working and keep on organizing more wine tastings.

I live my dream and nothing is impossible. I have so many future wine projects to realize.

The best is yet to come. Cheers!

FISAR sommelier