Thank you for a great Vinitaly! Notes from Amistà at the fair in Verona.

Vinitaly, the Italian wine industry’s annual trade fair, ended on Wednesday of this week after four days of meetings, tastings, seminars, and tasting panels. The Amistà team was there together with our U.S. and Asia-Pacific importer Ethica Wines.

This year’s gathering was a special one.

For many industry insiders, the 2023 trade fair, a yearly appointment for nearly everyone who works in Italian wine, was the first time that there was a returned sense of normalcy. The fair was cancelled in 2020 and 2021. And the 2022 event was by all accounts relatively subdued in terms of attendance.

According to data published by the organizer Veronafiere, roughly 93,000 people were in attendance this year, including nearly a third who came from foreign countries.

The number of foreigners in Verona increased by around 20 percent with respect to last year: There was 45% increase in U.S. fair goers and a nearly 120% increase in trade members from Asia.

All of this is great news for the Italian wine trade in general: With international travel and shipping back to what they were before early 2020, the Italian wine industry is on track to continue along its path of nearly constant growth.

And you could feel it in the air. Colleagues from across the globe who were reuniting after a nearly four-year absence and trade members who were eager to taste, make deals, and trade notes.

One highlight for the Amistà team was a Nizza seminar organized by the editors of Wine Spectator (more an that later). Another was a video interview that I was able to conduct with legendary enologist Luca D’Attoma, Amistà’s winemaker (we are currently translating, dubbing, and editing the interview; stay tuned for the Italian- and English-language versions!).

All in all, it was a Vinitaly to remember. It reminded all of those in attendance that the wine industry is much, much more than just fermented grape juice. It’s about people, their passion and devotion to their craft, and the human interactions that make Italian wine one of the best professions in the world.

Thanks to everyone who made it a great fair for Amistà. Stay tuned for notes about the seminar and the video.

Happy Easter, everyone!

Jeremy Parzen