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New York Wine Expo 2012: A Toast to Italian Wine-Making

Francesca Giuliani (March 06, 2012)
The New York Wine Expo 2012 brought to the Javits Center over 3,000 New Yorkers who love wine, free tastings and fun. The Italian presence at the event was significant: the Italian Pavilion by ITC, offering samples of specialty wines, oils and cheeses from Italy, was one of the most visited areas of the show.

Last weekend the place to go for drinks in Manhattan was the Jacob Javits Convention Center. From March 2 to March 4, the 5th annual New York Wine Expo brought together more than 3,000 New Yorkers who love wine, free tastings and fun. 

With over 150 international wine producers offering samples of their best bottles, and a program of wine-tasting seminars to get to know your bubbles on a more educated level, the New York Wine Expo was a great success, and Italy’s presence to the event was significant. The Italian Trade Commission (ITC) brought to the Expo a number of Italian wine, oil and cheese producers and importers in an “Italian Pavilion” that was one of the most visited areas of the Expo.

Aniello Musella, Italian Trade Commissioner, visited the “Italian Pavilion” on March 2, and he told i-Italy that the New York Wine Expo “is a very important event as it is consumer-oriented. Many of the wines represented in the Italian Pavilion are already available in restaurants and liquor stores in the US, and the choice of proposing wine and cheese combinations incentivizes the consumers to try new products.” 

Reaching out directly to the consumers, according to Musella, “is extremely important for the Italian companies on the American market,” and the Italian Trade Commission’s support to the Italian companies consists in helping them do so into other very important Expos in the country: the Saratoga Wine & Food Fest and the Newport Wine and Food Festival. 

The presence of American importers of Italian fine foods and wines is also very relevant, and strategic for the promotion of Made in Italy products on the US market. It’s the case of De Medici ImportsAtalanta Corporation, a New Jersey based corporation founded in 1945, the Food Division of which pays great attention to researching the finest Italian cheeses, olive oils and gourmet specialty products with a knowledge of Italian local specialty foods that surprised the Italian guests of the Expo, i-Italy included. 

American consumers appreciate Italian wines, said the representatives of Wine World Wide to i-Italy: “They are number one! The best sellers are Prosecco – light, crisp, easy to drink – and Pinot Grigio. The reds are also very popular.”

In appreciation of Italian reds, the Chianti reds and the other wines from the Arezzo province were dedicated an entire corridor, where the Strada Del Vino – Terre di Arezzo Information Center promoted its local products, its traditions and its tourism. 

Notwithstanding the global financial crisis, 2011 has been extremely positive for Italy’s wine exportations: “America alone imported Italian wines for a total cash-flow of $1.5 billion,” Musella stated, and aggregating the figures of wines and foods imports, the cash-flow reaches $4 billion. “Italy has been leading the wine market since 2006,” he added.

Italy is also leading the olive oil market, and the tradition of oil making is combined with innovation and creativity at the New York Wine Expo, where the Maruca cousins from Calabria, owners of Tre Olive LLC, brought their idea for a gift to Made in Italy lovers:  the adoption of an olive tree for a year, that can be visited in Calabria at the Tre Olive establishment, and from which the sponsor will receive oil. 

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