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New Trends in International Wine Consumption: Two Cutting Edge Masterclasses at Vinitaly 2024


In a world where the landscape of wine consumption is constantly evolving, two unmissable masterclasses promise to shed light on the biggest trends to hit the world of wine in 2024. “What Somms want” and “Taste the Rainbow: the wild world of Rifermentati from the heart of Italy” are being led by leading figures at the cutting edge of the global wine scene and represent an invaluable opportunity for producers, distributors and other wine professionals to understand the latest trends currently affecting the international wine market.

VERONA, Italy, April 3rd — First on the calendar at 13:30 on Sunday 14 April at wine2digital is “What Somms want”. In the wake of a decade marked by unprecedented upheavals, American restaurants have weathered storms ranging from pandemic lockdowns to socio-cultural movements like MeToo and Black Lives Matter. Wine & Spirits Magazine, cognizant of these shifts, delved into the heart of American restaurant wine programs through in-depth interviews with over 100 wine professionals nationwide. The insights gleaned from these discussions form the cornerstone of this session led by Stephanie Johnson, who will be joined by Sam Bortugno from Brennan’s in New Orleans (Louisiana) and Jaquelin Pirolo from Macchialina in Miami Beach (Florida). These two leading American sommeliers offer a glimpse into their own wine programs, unpack new consumer habits and tastes, and unveil the wines and wine regions currently trending with today’s restaurant goers. The session will culminate in a mock blind tasting panel, providing a behind-the-scenes peek into the meticulous process W&S Magazine employs to curate and assess wines, thus offering producers an invaluable glimpse into the inner workings of the influential wine selection and scoring methodology.

Stephanie Johnson and two Top Sommeliers at wine2wine Business Forum 2023

Speaking in advance of the event, Stephanie Johnson said: “I’m so excited to bring together sommeliers from New Orleans and Miami Beach to demonstrate Wine & Spirits Magazine’s blind tasting process and to talk about what’s currently trending on restaurant wine lists in the US.”

The second event, to be held on Monday 15 April at 14:45 at wine2digital, focuses on the resurgence of “Rifermentati” wines. Led by Jeff Porter IWA, influential sommelier and wine journalist, and Max Brondolo, owner of Podere Sottolinoce and co-founder of The Frizzante Revolution, this masterclass tells the remarkable story behind the renaissance of “Rifermentati” wines. Despite facing obscurity amidst mass industrialization, these wines are now experiencing a revival, championed by a daring cohort of producers who draw inspiration from the past to sculpt the present.

Choosing a vibrant selection of “vini frizzanti”, Jeff and Max traverse the annals of time, unraveling the rich tapestry of the past, present, and future of this unique wine. From the heart of Modena, a historic bastion of “Rifermentati” wines, this tasting will showcase how this diverse family of wines is inspiring oenophiles across Italy to delve into the allure, delectability, and dynamism of the category. Along the way it will dispel prevalent misconceptions and highlight why, in the contemporary landscape, “vini Rifermentati” really are the wines of the moment.

Jeff Porter said: “Today there is no better wine of the moment than Rifermentato. Spanning all different shades with a vibrancy and energy that makes them not only delicious but interesting, a full circle wine.”

Full event details, including registration, can be found at:

About Vinitaly

Vinitaly, the renowned wine event, is scheduled to take place from April 14th to the 17th 2024. Building on the success of Vinitaly 2023, which saw an impressive turnout of 93,000 visitors, including 29,600 top international buyers from 143 different countries, this year promises to be equally impactful. The premiere event, OperaWine “Finest Italian Wines: 100 Great Producers,” takes place on 13 April 2024, the evening before Vinitaly itself kicks off, and brings international wine professionals together in the heart of Verona, offering a unique opportunity to discover and taste the wines of the 131 Best Italian Producers, as selected by Wine Spectator. Since its inception in 1998, Vinitaly has extended its global reach serving as a nexus for the global wine supply chain, facilitating connections and fostering collaboration among producers, buyers, and stakeholders. In February 2014 Vinitaly International launched an educational project, the Vinitaly International Academy (VIA) with the aim of promoting and sharing the excellence and diversity of Italian wine around the globe.