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Black Tie Fine Wine and Dining 1
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Black Tie International:
 
Gala Italia Dinner & Awards Ceremony 
Wine Leader Award Recipients (L. to R.) Marc D. Taub (President & CEO of Palm Bay International), Piero Selvaggio (Owner of Valentino Restaurant in Santa Monica), Joshua Greene (Editor & Publisher of Wine & Spirits Magazine), Kevin Zraly (Author & Wine Educator at the Windows on the World Wine School) with Lucio Caputo (Center).
Wine Leader Award Recipients (L. to R.) Marc D. Taub (President & CEO of Palm Bay International), Piero Selvaggio (Owner of Valentino Restaurant in Santa Monica), Joshua Greene (Editor & Publisher of Wine & Spirits Magazine), Kevin Zraly (Author & Wine Educator at the Windows on the World Wine School) with Lucio Caputo (Center).
 

ANOTHER GREAT SUCCESS OF 
THE 32nd EDITION OF GALA ITALIA

Article by: Gloria Consolacion T. Cressler

International Editor and Host

 

Photographs by: Bill Lee Lanndis and Mary Tavarez


Boasting another successful event took place with the
 
Gala Italia Dinner & Awards Ceremony 

at the Grand Ballroom of the JW Marriott Essex House in New York City. This lovely dinner and awards ceremony presented under the patronage of the Italian Ambassador to Washington: Lucio Caputo, the President of the Italian Wine & Food Institute, and Maurizio Forte, the Italian Trade Commissioner.  The evening was kicked off with food and wine tasting of rich and delicious, high quality Italian Wines, Sparkling Wines and Champagnes at Petite Salon, which is always so well attended. 
All our guests relished the tasting, and it was so gratifying to see our
friends annually at this lovely reunion.

 

Next everyone was ushered into the Grand Ball Room to begin the dinner and awards ceremony which started off with the "Wine and Leader Awards". The first awardee was Joshua Greene (Editor of Wine & Spirits Magazine), next was Piero Selvaggio (owner of the restaurant "Valentino" in Los Angeles), followed by Marc D. Taub (President and CEO of Palm Bay International), and the final receiver was Kevin Zraly (Author and Wine Educator at the Windows on the World Wine School). All of these lucky recipients were awarded by the Italian Wine & Food Institute. We congratulate every one of these remarkable leaders – this is truly a great honor acquiring such a significant award.

 

As always… this event was represented by Food & Wine Editors from many of the most important and prestigious wine and food publications in the United States: from Wine Spectator, Wine Enthusiast, Bon Appetite, Wine & Spirits Magazine, from Forbes to Newsweek, Hearst Magazines, Food & Vine Country, Dessert Magazine, Beverage Media, New York Times, and Town & Country, as well as various news agencies, television stations, correspondents from the main Italian newspapers, and numerous VIPs, including Consul Isabella Periotto of the Consulate General of Italy.

 

The GALA ITALIA, for over thirty years, renewed its annual meeting of the most qualified American wine press in a noteworthy, beautifully detailed and organized event which presented a top selection of great, specialty-vintage wines. This annual occasion adds to the longevity and success, its true significance and superior traits, and the high-worth of quality Italian wines with the Made in Italy trademark - symbolizes class, and the totality of excellent product endorsements and branding.

 

Amongst the journalists in attendance: Jane Cortellini and Adam Strum of Wine Enthusiast Magazine; Jordan McDowell, Callie Eidler, Daria Saenko and Bruce Sanderson of Wine Spectator; Gary Walther of Wall Street Journal;Steve Cuozzo of New York Post; Ellen Roach of National News Service; Sam Dangremond of Town & Country;Noelle Xie of Star Daily; Jeanette Hektoen of JH Media; Ron Kapon of Cheese Connoisseur Magazine; Tony Lawrence of The Global Wine Chef; Jacquelyn Tietz of Kevin Zraly’s Wine School; Woody Wolston of The Cake Bible; Joel Levin of the NJ Newspaper Group; Maxine Albert of Bella NY Magazine; Joseph Broski of American Wine Society; Jesse Nash and Irene Patar of Syndicated Group; Jane Nausbaum of Newspaper First; Suzanne Richter ofStonebridge Media; David Allen of Today’s New; Sheri de Borchgrave of C&G Media; Gerald Dillon of The L Magazine; Thomas Farley of New York Insider; Gloria Cressler and Bill Lee Lanndis of Black Tie International Magazine; Robert Stepanek of IBR News; Bruce Alexander of Bruce’s World; Stefanos Kasselakis of Phila Coatings;Alex Shenberg of ASB Media Group; Tor Sporre’ of Food & Wine Country; Philip Kampe of  The Wine Hub; Harriet Lembeck of Wine & Spirits Program; William Lembeck of the  Society of Wine Educators; Kris Shetty of Asia Newsand Marina Carminati of NBC. Also present included numerous Italian journalists.

 

The Wine Tasting featured the following wines:
 the AB Vinea Doni, Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2014; the Citra, Caroso Montepulciano d’Abruzzo DOC 2010; the Ferrari Brut NV and the Ferrari Rosé NV; the Campora, Rosso Toscana IGT 2009; the Cavit, Lunetta, Prosecco NV and the Cavit, Infine Pinot Grigio Trentino Superiore DOC 2015; the Mezzacorona, NOS Teroldego Rotaliano Riserva DOC 2007; the Puiatti, LUS Ribolla Gialla IGP 2014; the Paretaio, Rosso Toscana IGT 2012; the Planeta, Cerasuolo di Vittoria DOCG, 2014; the Rocca delle Macie, Chianti Classico Riserva di Fizzano DOCG 2012; the Rotari Rosé, Trento DOC 2013 and the Rotari Brut, Trento DOC 2013; the Sella & Mosca, La Cala Vermentino DOC 2015; the Stemmari, Grillo, Sicilia DOC 2015; the Travaglini, Gattinara DOCG 2011 and the Vigna a Solatio, Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2015.

 

At the Gala Dinner were served: the Ferrari “Perlé” Trento DOC 2009; the Vigna a Solatio, Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG 2014; the Castello di Querceto, “Il Picchio” Chianti Classico Riserva, Gran Selezione DOCG 2012; the Col d’Orcia, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2007; the Campora, Rosso Toscano IGT 2009; the Mezzacorona NOS Teroldego Riserva 2007; the Bertani, Amarone della Valpolicella Classico DOC 2007; and the Fontanafredda, “Moncucco” Moscato d’Asti DOCG 2010.

 

The dinner recalled a professional wine tasting where guests seated around large round tables with triangular “glass mats” upon which were placed nine different glasses for the various dinner wines. Throughout the evening, the wines (whose descriptions were highlighted in the event program) with their specific qualities were further illustrated to the journalists by the wineries’ representatives.

 

The menu was specially prepared by Chefs Achilles Poliviou and Andrew Burriesci and by Pastry Chef Tommy Doh to pair with the exceptional dinner wines. The menu featured Butter Poached Lobster with butter head lettuce, treviso, watermelon radish and herbed olive oil; followed by Braised Lamb Ossobuco with white bean cassoulet, saute escarole, roasted cipolini onion and port wine reduction; and an assorted cheese plate of gorgonzola, parmigiano reggiano and asiago. Dinner concluded with a Mocha Chocolate Mousse Cake with gold leaf and hazelnut gelato. As always this event always served us delicious sumptuous food in which we enjoyed greatly. Guests were also treated to Ferrero Rocher chocolates provided by Ferrero,
and to ground coffee provided by Illy Caffé.

 

Among the past recipients of the "Wine Leaders Awards" attending were: Adam Strum, John Mariani, Florence Fabricant, Mary Ewing-Mulligan MW, Piero Antinori, Jacopo Biondi Santi, Pio Boffa (Pio Cesare), Matthew Lunelli (Ferrari) Chiara Lungarotti, Lucio Tasca, Sirio Maccioni, Gualtiero Marchesi, Giovanni Rana, Vittorio Assaf
and Fabio Granato.

 

An elegant, colorful catalogue was specially prepared for GALA ITALIA which contained detailed information on all wines, their participating companies and honorees. Over 2,000 copies were distributed to guests in attendance, and subsequently sent to principal trade representatives across the United States.

 

The GALA ITALIA was organized by the Italian Wine & Food Institute with the support of the Ministry of Economic Development and ICE-Italian Trade Commission. This time, I was accompanied by Bill Lee Lanndis, Mary Tavarez and my guest from Norway: Kristoffer Lepsoy. It was nice again to see Thomas P. Farley of New York Insider and our good friend Antonio Penello from Palm Bay International, Riccardo T. Legnaro VP Italian Brand, Antonello Cozzula, Fine Wine Manager, Aldo Sergovich, Fine Wine Manager - all with Palm Bay International, R. Michael Falchini of Axienda Agricola Casale-Falchini, Aurelio Conigliaro, Brand Ambassador of USA Emporio Bruca, Elena Grigio, Wine Consultant, Deanna D' Alfonso Gruppo Mezzacorona, Courtney Denelsbeck Ferrari Trento DCC, Azienda Agricola di Falchini, Alexandria Kolodko from Brooklyn Imports, and many others…

 

Once again, we congratulate Dr. Caputo and his staff for a job well done. Way to go! Bravo to all of you! We will see you again at our next fabulous event.

 

For information please contact the Italian Wine & Food Institute:
Tel.: 212-867-4111 - Email:
iwfi@aol.com -www.iwfinews.com

 

This is Gloria T. Cressler signing off we will see you at the next delicious Wine Tasting.

 

The Gala Dinner was prepared by the executive chefs at the JW Marriott Essex House.

The Gala Dinner was prepared by the executive chefs at the JW Marriott Essex House.

Joshua Greene (Left) is presented with the Wine Leader Award by Lucio Caputo.

Joshua Greene (Left) is presented with the Wine Leader Award by Lucio Caputo.

 Marc D. Taub (Left) is presented with the Wine Leader Award by Lucio Caputo.

 Marc D. Taub (Left) is presented with the Wine Leader Award by Lucio Caputo.

 Consul Isabella Periotto and Lucio Caputo (Right) present the Wine Leader Award

 Consul Isabella Periotto and Lucio Caputo (Right) present the Wine Leader Award
to Kevin Zraly (Center)

Italian Trade Commissioner Maurizio Forte (Left) and Lucio Caputo present the Wine Leader Award to Piero Selvaggio (Center).

Italian Trade Commissioner Maurizio Forte (Left) and Lucio Caputo present the Wine Leader Award to Piero Selvaggio (Center).

 Wine and Food Editors, trade representatives and VIP  attend the Wine Tasting Reception.

 Wine and Food Editors, trade representatives and VIP  attend the Wine Tasting Reception.

Gloria T. Cressler and the table of MEZZACORONA and Kristoffer Lepsoy

Gloria T. Cressler and the table of MEZZACORONA and Kristoffer Lepsoy

 
 
 
 

Gerard Mc Keon and Joyce Brooks.  Photo by:  Rose Billings/Blacktiemagazine.com

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