Find out more about the world-renowned names that make up the 2014 Decanter World Wine Awards judging line-up in this Q&A series.
Sergio de Luca is director of buying for Italy at Enotria World Wine. He has over 30 years’ experience in the UK market, and has been at Enotria for more than 25 years. de Luca’s family is in farming and all his experience is connected with the wine world, having studied and completed a degree in winemaking in Italy.
Read our interview with Sergio De Luca below…
☆ Which year or decade do you wish you’d been born in and why?
My year, 1959, was a great vintage everywhere, and a great Sauternes year, so I am quite happy to have been born in the year that I was.
☆ How old were you when you had your first wine ‘moment’ and what was it?
I was born in a vine growing family so we were used to drinking wine from a very early age – albeit sometimes mixed with water!
☆ How many bottles do you have in your cellar and what is your most recent addition?
Not too many – around 120 bottles – but all pretty good stuff! I picked up a 1990 Conterno Fantino Sori Ginestra Barolo today. It will highlight my weekend.
☆ How many years have you been working in the wine industry and what was your first job?
I have always worked in this trade, first at home where we have several hectares of Glera (Prosecco), and then while I was at university as part of the cellar team at the local wine cooperative.
☆ Which vintage and region (or wine) do you wish you’d bought a whole case of wine from?
Anything from Barolo. I am admittedly very biased. Italy has always been my choice of wine destination and Barolo, my region.
☆ In the last 12 months, which grape have you drunk the most of?
Glera (Prosecco), Nebbiolo and Chardonnay in that order.
☆ In the last 12 months, what’s the most exciting region you’ve discovered or re-discovered and why?
The region and wines of Campania have recently come to my attention. At the moment I am in love with the Devon Greco di Tufo produced by the Cantine Antonio Caggiano. It is a wonderful aromatic wine with an immense minerality.
☆ Who’s your wine idol (who has inspired you the most in the wine world)?
My idol is a winemaker who unfortunately passed away a few years ago. His name was Carlo Corino and he was one of the few Italian winemakers who decided to travel. He spent years in Australia and his view on wines, his tastes and how he made his wines was at least 10 years ahead of anybody else at that time.
☆ What’s your most memorable wine and food moment?
I don’t have one moment in particular. My late mother was a great cook so we had some wonderful meals at home. Unfortunately I realised that a bit too late …
☆ If you could taste/drink any wine in the world what would it be and who would you drink it with?
I would love to do a tasting of top Bordeaux with Emile Peynaud.
☆ What do you enjoy most about judging at the Decanter World Wine Awards?
I really appreciate the organisation, professionalism and seriousness of this tasting, and the high standard of the judges.
Written by Decanter
Sergio De Luca is Director of Buying for Italy at UK wholesaler Enotria&Coe.