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Decanter Italy Experience: Highlights from the London tasting

Decanter’s magazine editor reports from the first Decanter tasting dedicated to Italy since 2017, showcasing the best wines of the country, from north to south.

The Landmark Hotel in London has been hosting Decanter’s Fine Wine Encounters for many years, and the luxury venue once again opened its doors to guests on Saturday, where 60 of Italy’s finest wine estates waited to pour their wines.

Grand Tasting

The tasting offered guests the chance to enjoy wines from top names, poured and presented by the names behind the labels. In two tasting rooms, regions from across Italy were represented, from north to south – Piedmont and Tuscany of course, as well as Trentino Alto-Adige, Lombardy, Friuli-Venezia Giulia and Veneto in the north, Marche and Abruzzo, and the southern wine regions of Campania, Calabria and Puglia, Sicily and Sardinia.

Italy’s appeal for many lies in its wealth of indigenous grape varieties, and so the tasting presented a perfect opportunity for those tiring of the international grapes to discover exciting wines made from a roster of Italy’s finest native varieties, ranging from the well-known reds and whites used to make the classic wines of Piedmont, Tuscany and Veneto to more obscure varieties that many guests would have been tasting for first time, such as Refosco (Friulian red), Susumaniello (Puglian red), Lacrima (a red from Marche), and Caprettone (Campanian white).

Meanwhile, a selection of 25 award-winning wines from this year’s Decanter World Wine Awards were poured at a dedicated DWWA table, a chance to taste some of the top performers from the Italian entries. It was an eclectic line-up spanning styles that ranged from Prosecco and Col Fondo sparkling wine from Veneto, through Gavi and Lugana whites to reds from Lombardy, Piedmont, Puglia and Tuscany, and rounded off with a Platinum-winning Tuscan Vin Santo for the sweet-toothed among the guests.

Credit: Chloe Hashemi Photography


In addition to the main tasting, guests could purchase tickets to a series of exclusive tutored tastings. Three masterclasses focused respectively on the thrillingly diverse white wines of Alto Adige, from a range of producers; Tuscan rising star Il Caggio, with a mini vertical tasting of four vintages of its Ipsus Chianti Classico Gran Selezione; and Bertani’s range of Valpolicella styles, up to Ripasso and Amarone in vintages dating back to 2005.

Another star-studded event, featuring stellar names, stellar wines, old favourites and new discoveries. Look out for a set of pictorial highlights from the event shortly – if you attended, keep an eye out for our photo gallery as you may be featured. If you missed the event, we’ll be hosting another tasting in November, again at The Landmark London, but this time showcasing top names from around the world. Or for those based further afield, we host our third New York Fine Wine Encounter in June 2024, and a brand new tasting event in Singapore this coming October.

The Decanter Italy Experience was kindly sponsored by Riedel and Belu.

Highlights from the Decanter Italy Experience:

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