Wine: Synonymous with Family and Friends


Identifying the Hottest Wine Markets

Alessia Antinori, winemaker and ambassador of Marchesi Antinori brands, on where her family's legendary wine company and vineyards are finding the most growth.

When I find a great bottle of wine, the first thing I do is think of who I want share it with.

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When friends come over, instinctively, I open a bottle of wine.

Wine, to me, is just synonymous with family and friends. Maybe because wine making is historically a family business. It certainly is for the the Antinori family. They have been in the wine business for more than 600 years, creating 26 generations of winemakers.

So as I listened to Alessia Antinori, winemaker and ambassador of Marchesi Antinori brands, I thought of family.

I thought of my family.

Alessia and her two sisters specialize in different aspects of the business. As the export manager and a winemaker for Marchesi Antinori, Alessia travels all over Italy, Australia and Asia for months at a time.

And thanks to their latest ventures in Cailifornia and Washington state, she adds the USA to her flight itinerary.

But she has learned the business from her father, Piero, a Florentine nobleman and world-renowned vintner, who actually introduced Americans to Italian wine back in the 1960s.

And Piero made sure they kept the business in the family, avoided going public and government intervention. They do business as a family. They drink wine as a family.

There is something about a fabulous glass of wine that makes everything seem easier. And there’s something about the comfort of being with my family that makes me feel the same. So we have wine together.And you should too. Go have a glass of wine with someone you love.

Alla mia famiglia, Cent’ Anni!

What is your death row wine? 

Chateau Mouton Rothschild 1982. This is truly the greatest wine I’ve ever tasted.

What region produces the best wine?

Tuscany’s Chianti Classico. It’s not just because my family has been making wines in Tuscany since 1385, it’s that the wines from this region have great depth and expressiveness as well as the ability to improve with age.

What is the best wine and food pairing you¹ve ever had? 

I enjoy trying wines with different kinds of foods to see how they work together. One of my favorite pairings was an amazing tempura in Japan with Montenisa Brut Rosé Franciacorta.

What will the U.S. wine industry look like in 10 years?

I think Americans from a much broader geography will come to discover and enjoy higher quality wines. Right now, the 'wine community' in the U.S. is largely concentrated in the biggest cities, but I already see that changing as I travel around the U.S. to places like Charleston, Denver, Tampa and Portland. I also think there will also be greater interest in high quality white wines.

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