Wednesday, May 5, 2010

The Marketing Society in Florence

Buongiorno from Florence! As an International Liaison this semester, I planned an event to learn about the branding that goes behind one of the most famous wines in the world, Chianti. This past Friday, we did a tour and wine tasting.

You can reach the Castello di Verrazzano by a quick trip on the bus. Sound familiar? The explorer Verrazzano used to live here, who explored the area around New York. I thought it was a nice tie in.

The wines we tasted include a Super Tuscan, Chianti Classico and a Chianti Classico Reserva. They do a lot of work to maintain these names. On the tour we learned that all Chianti wines must recieve a D.C.O.G. (Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita) certification. There is a governing body that oversees this. Some of the most interesting rules are:
  • All grapes must be grown in the Chianti province of Tuscany
  • 80% of grapes must be of the San Giovese variety
  • The other 20% must be another type of red grape from Chianti (like Cabernet or Merlot)
  • Chianti Classico wines must be aged for a maximum of 10 years
  • Chianti Classico Reserva wines must be aged for two years more than the Classico
  • Super Tuscans don't adhere to Chianti Classico rules, but only use Tuscan grapes
The winery also makes its own balsamic vinegar. They use the same production techniques as the Modena Tradition classification, but since Chianti is outside of the Modena city, they can't use the name!

The whole group! Hopefully some new Marketing Society members.

The drying room for all the grapes (they are harvested from September to October)

GIANT barrels. They age up to 500 liters of wine in these.

Matteo, our tour and tasting guide (you can actually smell the differences when someone points them out)
The vineyards and Tuscan landscape

Overall, it was a wonderful trip and educational as well. If you're ever in Tuscany and are interested in what goes on behind the scenes in the wine industry, I highly recommend taking a tour. The Italians are very welcoming, and it was a great experience.

No comments:

Post a Comment