After its three successful events in America ( San Francisco, New York and Chicago) the Tre Bicchieri World Tour takes off once more, this time from Düsseldorf. It officially opened ProWein 2012, one of Europe's three most important wine fairs (along with Vinexpo in Bordeaux and Vinitaly, about which you'll read elsewhere on this site).
Over 180 wineries participated in the first Tre Bicchieri event in the economic capital of the Ruhr, the most important market in Germany for Italian wine. “I'm really happy that Gambero Rosso understood how much an event like ProWein matters. This synergy is really useful for Italian producers. We had excellent results,” said Ornella Venica, from the Venica & Venica winery in Friuli. But Düsseldorf was more than just a tasting (led by the two senior editors of the Vini d'Italia 2012 guide, Marco Sabellico and Gianni Fabrizio).
The German edition of Vini d'Italia 2012 was presented at the opening. Italian ambassador Michele Valensise (in the photo to the right) appreciated the event. “Germany is our most important commercial partner, and must continue to be so. We have to grow in this market.” But what is different abou ProWein and makes it unique? Here's how Hans Werner Reinhard, Managing Director of Messe Düsseldorf since 1994, answers: “Undoubtedly, its international nature. The event is only for professionals, and the quality of the members of the trade that appear is the key. This year we had 11% more Italian exhibitors.”
How do you explain this? Jens Priewe, well-known German wine writer says, “The success of Prosecco is unlimited. It has been at the top for years. Then, of course, comes Barolo and Brunello, but the performance of Lugana shouldn't be underrated.”
This view was confirmed by the Tre Bicchieri guests who crowded the imposing Stadthalle of the Düsseldorf Congress. “Lugana is a fresh and easy-to-drink wine. Many, many Germans love to go to that area on their vacations, and every time they open a bottle of Lugana, besides an excellent wine, they find a memory, a moment of lightheartedness. It's like making a trip to Italy every evening,” comments Sebastian Raabe, owner of the Wein & Glas wine bar.
The collaboration between Gambero Rosso and ProWein will continue and expand in the next editions of the Düsseldorf fair. This is just the beginning. The relationship between Italy and Germany, as Chancellor Angela Merkel recently affirmed while congratulating Prime Minister Monti, are better than ever.
by Lorenzo Ruggeri