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A pat on the back for our new bottling of Asolo Prosecco Superiore Brut

Today, we can’t help but pat ourselves on the back for the work that we’ve done first in the vineyards and then in the cellar. The results have been remarkable.

The new bottling of our Asolo Prosecco DOCG Superiore Brut had 6 grams of residual sugar and it is alive and taut.

Citron zest, mandarin oranges, generous minerality, and serious drinkability.

Luca Ferraro
grape grower, winemaker

best prosecco brut

Prosecco Colfòndo & caviar tomorrow in San Francisco

ceri smith italian wine

Above: Ceri Smith is one of the most dynamic people working in Italian wine today. Our blogmaster will be pouring our Prosecco Colfòndo at her shop Biodivino in San Francisco from 6-8 p.m. tomorrow.

Bele Casel Prosecco Colfòndo Tasting
Wednesday, December 17, 6-8 p.m.
1415 Green St
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 673-2320
Google map

Here’s what Ceri had to say about tomorrow’s tasting in her e-letter:

Tis the season for sparkling wine! We’re continuing our month of bubbles this Wednesday with food and wine historian, Italian translator and rock musician Jeremy Parzen, PhD, who writes the popular Do Bianchi wine blog. He’ll be in the shop Wednesday night sharing his knowledge and presenting a selection of wines from Bele Casel.

Bele Casel was one of the first producers imported to the US making prosecco in the ‘col fondo’ style. Literally ‘with the bottom’, col fondo prosecco is made by leaving the wine with the yeast cells after fermentation, which results in a wine with added complexity and a drier, less overtly fruity flavor. Col fondo strikes a great balance betweeen crisp, refreshing prosecco and richer, fuller Champagne.

As an added bonus, since many of you expressed dismay at not being able to make last Saturday’s rain delayed caviar tasting, Otto Szilyagi will be returning to shop with a selection of caviar this Wednesday as well!

His pick for pairing with prosecco is the white sturgeon, which just happens to be the one sourced from Italy! Otto will show you the best way to enjoy it. Come celebrate with us this Wednesday!

Bele Casel meets “Modern American Chophouse” at Jar in LA

jar restaurant los angeles wine list

Above: The menu at Jar in Los Angeles focuses on wholesome, locally sourced ingredients and classic Americana dishes (image via the Jar website).

Pulitzer-prize winning food critic Jonathan Gold included it in his list of top 101 restaurants for the Los Angeles Times.

LA Magazine included it as well in its list of the city’s top 75 dining destinations.

It’s no surprise because Jar is one of the City of Angels’ most beloved restaurants, known for its comfort food and Americana cuisine.

Since she opened Jar in 2001, owner Suzanne Tracht has never strayed from the pure, essential cooking that has made this restaurant a Los Angeles culinary icon.

And we’re proud to know that Bele Casel Prosecco is served there.

8225 Beverly Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 655-6566
Google map

Colfòndo featured by Corriere della Sera, leading Italian national daily

From last week’s edition of the Corriere della Sera magazine “Sette.” Translation by our blogmaster.

“Sustainable: Old-Style Prosecco”

It doesn’t sparkle. It doesn’t explode with aromas.

Old-style Prosecco is called Col Fondo. It ferments in the bottle. It’s “nuttier” than most.

Bele Casel’s Asolo DOCG is made from organically farmed grapes and it contains the passion of a young grape grower named Luca Ferraro (in the photo with his wife and children).

what is prosecco colfondo col fondo

Taste Bele Casel on Dec. 17 in San Francisco with our blogmaster

From our blogmaster, Jeremy Parzen aka Do Bianchi

ceri smith biondivino san francsico

Above: Ceri Smith, owner of Biondivino and one of the leading experts on Italian wine in the U.S. today (image via the Biondivino Facebook).

I’m thrilled to share the news that on Wednesday, December 17, I will be pouring Bele Casel Prosecco Colfòndo at one of my favorite wineshops in America, Ceri Smith’s Biondivino in San Francisco’s Fillmore District (Green at Polk).

I’ve known and admired Ceri for many years now: she’s one of our country’s leading experts on Italian wine and I have loved and enjoyed her selection of mostly Italians since we first met back in 2008.

She’s been a fan of one our favorite wineries and my client, Bele Casel, since it first came to this country. Bele Casel’s Prosecco Colfòndo — an undisgorged, metodo ancestrale, old-school Prosecco — is a wine that we pour by the glass at Sotto in Los Angeles (where I co-author the wine list), a wine that I regularly offer to my wine club, and a wine that Tracie P and I drink gladly in our home.

It’s salty and crunchy, wholesome and refreshing and I’m entirely stoked to be sharing it with San Fransiscans week after next. Details follow… Hope to see you there!

Bele Casel Prosecco Colfòndo Tasting
Wednesday, December 17, 6-8 p.m.
1415 Green St
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 673-2320
Google map

Norme UE troppo rigide su internet e marketing causano una protesta tra i produttori di vino italiani

Click here for the English version.

monforte alba barolo langhe piemonte

Sopra: Monteforte d’Alba è un paese nella denominazione “Barolo”. Si trova nelle “Langhe” in “Piemonte”. Una norma europea ha limitato un produttore di Barolo di Monteforte per aver menzionato “Langhe” e “Piemonte” in internet e in altro tipo di materiale promozionale perché in conflitto con la denominazione “Langhe” e “Piemonte”. 

Un’inchiesta di oggi nel quotidiano inglese The Independent descrive un dibattito che si è sviluppato tra i produttori italiani: le rigide norme europee in tema di marketing ora limitano l’utilizzo di riferimento regionali che le cantine usano sia online che su materiale stampato.

All’inizio dell’anno, un produttore di Barolo è stato condannato per “aver menzionato in materiale promozionale il fatto che la sua cantina si trovi nelle Langhe in Piemonte, oltre che nello stesso paese che ha dato il nome al vino rosso.”

In altre parole, per l’aver scritto “Langhe” e “Piemonte” nel materiale promozionale, ha violato una norma UE: “Langhe” e “Piemonte” sono sì, entrambi nomi di luogo ma sono anche destinati alla denominazione in Europa – “Langhe DOC” e “Piemonte DOC.”

Anche se la cantina in questione si trova nelle colline delle Langhe in Piemonte, il produttore ha violato una regola menzionando i nomi dei paesi all’interno del materiale promozionale.

La storia è stata riportata nel quotidiano inglese dopo che il fondatore di Slow Food Carlo Petrini ha pubblicato in una testata online uno scritto in merito alla questione, la settimana scorsa. Nel pezzo, ha espresso la sua perplessità per questa regola così restrittiva e ha offerto supporto alla Federazione Italiana Vignaioli Indipendenti e la loro chiamata alla disobbedienza civile.

Ad inizio ottobre, la federazione ha pubblicato una lettera aperta nel sito internet denunciando questa norma e passando all’azione chiedendo agli oltre 600 membri di violare la norma (se non già violata) e di riportare l’infrazione commessa.

Se il governo italiano non prende una decisione per cambiare – riuscendo a farlo – la legge entro il 31 dicembre 2014, la Federazione ha dichiarato che chiamerà i propri membri ad agire già a partire dal 1 gennaio 2015.

“Siamo pronti alla disobbedienza civile,” scrive l’autore della lettera aperta ad opera della FIVI, “per difendere il diritto a comunicare il nostro territorio.”

Rigid EU internet & marketing restrictions cause uproar among Italian winemakers

Clicca qui per la versione italiana.

monforte alba barolo langhe piemonte

Above: Monforte d’Alba is a village in the “Barolo” appellation. It lies in the “Langhe” hills of the “Piemonte” region. EU regulations restrict a Monforte-based producer of Barolo from mentioning “Langhe” or “Piemonte” in online and other marketing materials because of a perceived conflict with the “Langhe” and “Piemonte” appellations.

A report today in the British daily The Independent describes a brewing controversy among Italian winemakers: rigid EU marketing regulations now restrict regional references that wineries can use online and in other printed marketing materials.

Earlier this year, a Barolo producer was fined after “he had mentioned in marketing material that his cellar was in the Langhe area of Piedmont, as well as being in the village that has given the red wine its name.”

In other words, because he had written “Langhe” and “Piemonte” in his promotional media, he was in violation of EU law: “Langhe” and “Piemonte” are both place names but they are also officially designated appellations in Europe — “Langhe DOC” and “Piemonte DOC.”

Even though the winery in question is located in the Langhe hills of Piedmont (Piemonte in Italian), the winemaker broke the rules by mentioning the place names somewhere in his marketing material.

The story was reported in the English-language media after Slow Food founder Carlo Petrini published an online editorial on the controversy last week. In the piece, he expresses his bewilderment in the face of such restrictive regulation and he offers his support to the Italian Federation of Independent Grape Growers and its call for civil disobedience.

In early October, the Federation published an open letter on its website denouncing the regulations and threatening to ask its more than 600 members to violate the regulations (if not already in violation) and then “self-report” the infraction.

If the Italian government does not move to change — and succeed in changing — the regulations by December 31, 2015, the Federation says it will call for its members to act as early as January 1, 2015.

“We are ready to engage in civil disobedience,” write the authors of the Federation’s open letter, “in order to defend our right to market our appellations.”


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