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Here Is Why Hundreds of Wine Producers Have Decided to Take Part in 5StarWines 2019 Blind Tasting

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A selected jury of international wine experts including 8 Masters of Wine and 3 Master Sommeliers will assess wines from all over the world during the 2019 edition of 5StarWines the blind tasting organized by Vinitaly from April 3rd to 5th in Verona. Hundreds of wineries from Italy and other countries have already signed up to have their wines assessed but there is still time until March 15th to join.

5StarWines is the perfect promotional tool for wine producers to enhance the value of their products and acknowledge the work behind each label. From April 3rd to 5th in Verona, 5StarWines has prepared a line-up of internationally-renowned judges with qualifications such as Master of Wine and Master Sommelier who will assess the quality of each wine enrolled in the blind tasting. The event will be the perfect opportunity to strengthen wineries’ international visibility as well as their commercial network.

Every year in April, Verona becomes the world capital of wine for its Vinitaly expo as well as numerous wine trade events leading-up to the fair. In addition to buyers and winery representatives who gather in the city, other professional figures also play a leading role: Masters of Wine, Master Sommeliers, WSET Diploma holders, Vinitaly International Academy Italian Wine Experts and Ambassadors, oenologists, and wine journalists. These highly-skilled, international wine professionals will also be the protagonists at 5StarWines 2019 and will lend their expertise to taste samples from all over the world sent to Verona for the occasion.

Left: Lynne Sherriff MW will lead the judges at 5StarWines 2019 as the Senior General Chairman. Right: Stevie Kim, CCO of 5StarWines and Managing Director of Vinitaly International poses with Daniele Cernilli, Italian wine critic at DoctorWine and one of the 5StarWines General Chairmen.

In particular, the Master of Wine and Master of Sommelier titles are the highest international titles to be achieved in the wine business. If the importance of the critic that evaluates wines partly reflects their value, participating in 5StarWines and making the selection are guarantees of quality.

Pedro Ballesteros Torres MW, wine educator, editor, and judge at several wine competitions, states: «5StarWines is a powerful tool for Italian wine producers as it gives them the chance to gather feedback from experts coming from all over the world». Stevie Kim, Managing Director of Vinitaly International, adds: «Our panel of judges is mostly international as we want our Italian producers to sell abroad. If we want our wines to please palates outside Italy, one of the optimal ways is to get international and authoritative experts to taste them».

Left: Pedro Ballesteros Torres MW. Right: a moment during 5StarWines 2018.

After the judges’ review, another tool for internationalization that 5StarWines offers is its guide, 5StarWines – The Book. The guide gathers selected wines from the tasting that have obtained a score of at least 90/100. In the guide, each wine label is included with a dedicated page featuring photographs, information on the winery, score, and the panel’s tasting notes.

Published in both print and digital formats, the guide is distributed in Italy and abroad during trade fairs, B2B meetings, and various other business events in key foreign markets, thus making the publication an asset for producers’ business.

One of the most significant opportunities for the selected 5StarWines producers is to travel abroad with Vinitaly International during the Vinitaly Tour becoming part of a series of masterclasses featuring 5StarWines labels. This initiative has proved very effective, increasing both producers’ and buyers’ opportunities of cross promotion.

Commenting on the outcomes of Vinitaly Russia last November, Stevie Kim explained that the interaction among producers in these occasions has been very productive for the purpose of  making Italian wines grow in foreign markets: «Some international judges of 5StarWines also take part in OperaWine, Vinitaly’s opening event which celebrates Italian producers chosen by Wine Spectator. During the expo, these judges also join Vinitaly Incoming program sponsored by ICE – Italian Trade Agency. 5StarWines is therefore part of a wider promotional project which unfolds throughout the year».

In this promotional project, increasing wineries’ online visibility is essential. Since 2018 5StarWines has partnered up with Wine Searcher, the most famous online search engine and ecommerce for wine with a database including over 6 million of entries and constantly being updated. Thanks to this partnership, 5StarWines labels will again be included in the dedicated “Wine Critics & Wine Scores” section of Wine Searcher. In it, 5StarWines brands are published with their producer’s details, vintage, average price, and the score given during the event.

Millions of users access the portal every day not only to purchase wines but also to learn more about these wines through news features, information on wine regions, grape varieties, and more. Wine Searcher is also available in its app version in several languages.

Another important way in which 5StarWines boosts wineries’ online visibility is the fact that during Vinitaly, users of the Vinitaly App on their smartphone will receive a notification about the selected 5StarWines labels along with notification of their position on the fairgrounds.

5StarWines blind tasting will take place on April 3rd, 4th, and 5th, with part of April 3rd also devoted to Wine Without Walls, the section exclusively dedicated to natural, biodynamic, and low-sulfites wines. Wineries interested in participating can submit their samples before March 15th. Queries about logistics and special offers available for wineries can be addressed by writing to the 5StarWines team at [email protected].

5StarWines – the Book is the annual wine selection organised by Vinitaly. Held in the lead-up to the biggest Italian wine fair in the world, the event is now at its third edition. 5StarWines is a three-day tasting aiming at shedding light on wineries investing in the improvement of their products. During the event, a highly qualified panel of wine professionals tastes and gives score on a 100-point scale to the participating wines. In the last edition, over 2700 bottles took part in the selection and 625 were selected, making it on the 5StarWines – the Book. The guide is a useful tool both on the promotional and commercial side. It introduces the international buyer and wine lover from all over the world to new wine products of great value. It guarantees quality for the wines and it maintains and certifies their value at an international level.

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