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This week Verona was again the centre of the most important international annual wine fair of Italy. Vinitaly is a 4 day event being held from the 10th of April to the 13th of April at the Veronafiere Fairground. A couple of days ago we said goodbye to the 50th edition of Vinitaly, which was visited by approximately 150.000 people from all over the world.

This year the Veronese fair centre was bigger than ever with over 100.000 square meter of exhibition ground and more than 4100 exhibitors. The fair area was huge and divided into 12 different pavilions, each representing different wine regions. Big stands, beautifully designed by architects, are being built with big money to promote wineries and their products; it’s a great trade show and an amazing experience for those who like displays of grandeur.

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Paolo Dettori, Dettori

Fortunately, Vinitaly also has something to offer to the lovers of artisan wines. There are two distinct areas which are very interesting, namely the area of Vigne Vignaioli Terroir, or ViViT, which is synonymous with artisan wines and the area of FIVI, the Italian Federation of Independent Winegrowers.

Both organisations sat side by side in pavilion 8 of the exhibition centre, creating a path between producers that share the same values ​​of transparency, authenticity and individuality. the producers here made use of simple and basic setups which placed maximum emphasis on the winegrowers and their products, without wasting space and resources on equipment and furnishing. In these exhibition areas the wines are the leading part.

You might also find the occasional pearl in the regional pavilions, wineries which are not part of one of the wine associations, but hidden between the big stands. They can often remain undiscovered.

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There are also plenty of events taking place alongside Vinitaly. One of them and surely the most interesting for natural wine lovers, is the wine fair organised by VinNatur in Villa Favorita, Vicenza. As an experience it’s in many ways the total opposite of Vinitaly. The event was held in the countryside of Vicenza surrounded by vineyards in a beautiful authentic villa from the 18th century, a stunning location, far away from the commercial world.

It’s a unique event and one of the most important events for natural wines in Europe. It brings together European winegrowers who share techniques and experiences on how to produce wine in a natural way, both in the vineyard and in the cellar, and to discuss the “terroir culture”. 

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Flavio Faliva, Cà del Vént

Each visitor  is able to meet and get to know the producers themselves, to taste the new vintages of their wines and sample from the barrels and new “entries” like in the case of the winery Cà del Vént. The winery presented two new wines at Villa Favorita which are the first wines made by following the principles of quantum physics throughout the whole winemaking process. The result, after years of experimentation, is excellent. This kind of experimentation and innovation is part of natural winemaking and in Villa Favorita you can learn about many interesting ways of conducting natural viticulture. In a friendly, warm and easy going atmosphere where the wine plays the leading role.  

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Vanni Nizzoli, Cinque Campi