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Monday, 27 February 2017

Live Wine Milan 2017 - a natural wine fair

The other day (17th and 18th Feb) I was at Live Wine in Milan, one of the many natural wine fairs held in Italy these days. There were at least five others that I could have chosen from, for example Villa Favorita, Cerea, Fornovo, Sorgente del Vino or some others.

In France also there are at least 5 or 6 good natural wine fairs to choose from, though I probably won't go to any in France this year. In contrast, in Spain there are only 2: Vins Nus held in Barcelona and organized by the Spanish natural winegrowers association PVN (Productores de Vinos Naturales = Producers of Natural Wines); and the other one is called H2O and is organized privately by Laureano Serres and/or Joan Ramon Escoda, both natural wine producers from Catalonia.

Another difference between the Spanish natural wine scene and the French/Italian one is in the numbers of producers and visitors that show up at the fairs. The Spanish fairs have about 30/40 producers and about 1000 visitors/day, while the smaller Fr/It fairs have about 200 producers and receive about 3000 visitors.

Yet another difference that I noticed was the age range of the visitors. I couldn't help noticing it, as I was standing at my table, pouring wine and talking to them for 10 hours/day! The majority of my visitors were in their 20s/30s (and very few older people), whereas at the Spanish fairs I go to, it's the opposite way around, ie very few young people and an abundance of old coots!

Why is this? Why such a great difference between Spain and France/Italy? All three countries are major historical producers of wine, all producing the same volume of wine each year (about 50 million hl/yr), but that's the only similarity. As far as natural wine is concerned, I'd guess that there must be about 500 producers in France and 500 in Italy; but there are only about 50 in Spain.

An interesting question to ponder, no? I'm afraid I have no idea why there is such a difference. Any theories welcome.

And to finish off, a nice photo, which has nothing to do with the above. This is of my Doré vineyard which I was in the other day, at about 800 m between El Tiemblo and Cebreros, in the Sierra de Gredos. Still unpruned as yet.

Doré vineyard in Sierra de Gredos

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