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This story originally appeared in the Napa Valley Register.
What do wine and radicchio have in common?

Lucio Gomiero. Gomiero is the owner and winemaker of Vignalta, called the queen of the Colli Euganei in Northern Italy. And Gomiero was once considered the king of radicchio, the bitter leaf that originates from Italy.

Gomiero studied architecture at the University of Venice but was bitten by the winemaking bug. Inspired by the wines of Bordeaux, he purchased land in 1980.

At the time, Colli Euganei was a little unknown region, the Euganean or Ventian hills that sit above the Venetian plain, and are of geological origin. Volcanic action 30 million years ago pushed the sea floor up, creating steep hills rising to 600 meters above sea level, with loose soils of crumbling lava and thick vegetation, perfect for red wines.

This story originally appeared in the Napa Valley Register (February 26, 2016) Vini d'Italia 2016 Special Awards - Eleonora Guerini and Marco Sabellio Every year, one of the most anticipated wine events is the Gambero Rosso Tre Bicchieri World Tour. This premier Italian wine showcase features the wines that have garnered the coveted “tre bicchieri” (or “three glasses”) award. Gambero Rosso is the world’s foremost guide on Italian wines, and their team of 70 experts and dedicated wine tasters spend six months each year visiting every region in Italy. They taste more than 50,000 bottles of wine in blind tastings and give a score to every wine. One glass is a good wine; two glasses is a very good wine; three glasses is an exceptional wine. The recipients of the tre bicchieri award are in the annual Vini d’Italia guide, which has been published since 1988. Out of 50,000 wines, 400 were given the award of three glasses. Quite a feat. But then, from these 400 wines, there are some special awards given. At the recent Tre Bicchieri tasting in New York, part of a five-city tour across the United States, Marco Sabellico, editor-at-large at Gambero Rosso, and Eleonora Guerini, an editor at Vini d’Italia, led a tasting of these specially awarded wines. The 2016 Vini d’Italia 2016 Special Awards recipients are:
Each year the Tre Bicchieri tour comes to the US to showcase the best wines from Italy. So, I flew up to San Francisco for this year's tasting as it is a great opportunity to taste some of the best wines from Italy all in one place! Gambero Rosso, an Italian food and wine magazine founded in 1986, publishes the annual Guida Vini d'Italia. The wine ratings are based upon blind tastings by independent experts. Ratings are built up on the number of glasses (or bicchieri) awarded to a wine. This is then indicated in the wine guide with a number of stylized glasses next to the wine's name. The highest rating is Tre Bicchieri (three glasses).
  • Three glasses indicate "extraordinary wines".
  • Two glasses indicate "very good wines".
  • One glass indicates "good wines".