wine workshops

Italy is one of the top three wine exporting nations worldwide and, while we’ve long been fans of Barolo, Chianti and Frascati, Australia is just beginning its love affair with lesser known wines from regions such as Sicily and Puglia. These sessions bring together leading wine authorities (producers, importers, writers, sommeliers) to lead you through a guided tasting of some of Italy’s most exciting wines, with the opportunity to ask questions, share your thoughts and learn about the regions that produce them.

Nick Caraturo is the NSW representative for Enoteca Sileno, one of Australia’s oldest importers of premium Italian wine. He has had a long career in Sydney restaurants, including as Head Sommelier roles at Banc, Buon Ricordo and The Park Hyatt.
Lara Caraturo has been a Sommelier in Sydney for 12 years. She has been Head Sommelier at Pilu at Freshwater since 2005, where she has developed a wine list that has won numerous awards, including ‘Wine List Of The Year’ in the 2010 Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide.

Day pass to all 3 sessions $100 (includes parking at SFM) or $40/session; $35/session for CIRA members.

11am – 12.15pm
Wines of Sicily                 Code: 1WO
Sicily has the most hectares under vine of any region in Italy and is the fourth largest regional wine producer by volume. It is an island of amazing vinous diversity, from the misunderstood Marsala through to the rich and voluptuous sweet passito wines of the tiny neighbouring island of Pantelleria. This tasting will feature some of the island’s most important indigenous varietals, including Nero D’Avola, the emerging Cataratto and Nerello Mascalese of Mt Etna, and Cerasuolo di Vittoria (Sicily’s only DOCG wine), as well as Passito di Pantelleria.
Featuring: Marsala, white, rosato, red and sweet wines. Grape varieties: Grillo, Inzolia, Carricante, Grecanico, Nero d'Avola, Nerello Mascalese, Frappato.
Presenters: Max Allen, Giorgio De Maria, Michael Trembath

12.45pm – 2pm
Wines of Puglia                 Code: 2WO
The ‘heel’ of Italy, Puglia, is a wine region emerging from a history of bulk winemaking, often sending its production of ‘strong’ wine surreptitiously north to be blended illegally into lighter northern wines. Today, there is a new generation of Pugliese winemakers who recognise the suitability of the region, and its native varietals, for quality wine production. This tasting will highlight native white varietals such as Verdeca and Bombino Bianco, as well as the better known red varietals Primitivo, Negroamaro and Nero Di Troia.
Featuring: Sparkling, white, red and sweet wines, and a vertical tasting of Rivera’s ‘Il Falcone Riserva’, one of Puglia’s greatest red wines. Grape Varieties: Bombino, Fiano, Falanghina, Primitivo, Nero di Troia, Negroamaro, Aglianico.

Presenters: Max Allen, Sabino Matera, Joel Pizzini

2.30pm – 3.45pm
Great Red Wines of Tuscany               Code: 3WO
Explore a selection of the greatest red wine styles from Italy’s best known wine region. While this tasting will showcase the flagship Chianti Classicos and Brunello di Montalcino that have made the sangiovese grape known worldwide, it will also feature other sangiovese-based wines, such as Morellino di Scansano and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. It will include wine from the Maremma, that stretch of coastal Tuscany where Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot reign supreme, home to the village of Bolgheri and Italy’s most well known wine, Sassicaia.
Featuring: Chianti Classico, Brunello di Montalcino, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, Super Tuscan. Grape varieties: Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Colorino, Pugnitello.
Presenters: Max Allen, Joel Pizzini, Michael Trembath