Decisions, decisions...I am super proud to be part of the hospitality industry.  Supplying Italian wine to restaurants and shops has become an amazingly satisfying career for me- I love our community!  Recently we started a monthly “Industry Night” in Orange County, California, where we get together to network, to relax, to get to know each other, and to taste wine.  What better way to start our BYO evenings than with our first theme… Nebbiolo!

Rinaldi 1993-1This is a really simple concept you can start almost anywhere you are able to collect a group of oenophiles interested in tasting.  Have everyone bring a bottle around a theme you pre-determine.  Find an awesome spot where you can taste the wine together, maybe have something to eat while you’re at it.

Hosts with the Most!

Luckily for us, we have access to Sgt. Pepperoni’s Pizza in Newport Beach where Stan and Jenn Frazier are wiling to host geeky wine gathering.  As it says on the sign…

Peace Love Pizza

 Peace, Love & Pizza!

The greatest thing about organizing an event like this is the way it builds community.  It’s really fun to come together to share something as interesting and personal as a bottle of with from your own personal collection.  You’ll learn something about everyone else too.  Wine is an excellent ice-breaker!

Borgogno 64-1

Definitely the stunner of the night (thanks, Gary!)… 1964 Borgogno. Original closure.  Perfectly stored and wrapped in cellophane.  Blooming with violets and dried mushrooms.  Just gorgeous.


The infamous Cheeseburger Pizza.  You know you want this.


Meatballs.  To. Die. For.


We had unusual Nebbiolo from unusual places.  Boca. Carema. Valtellina. Ghemme. Gattinara.  We also tasted a lot of the Langhe. Interestingly enough, I thought somebody would bring a Nebbiolo from California, but nobody did.  I guess we are all a little bit in love with Italia! It was a beautiful sight to behold, all those bottles of Nebbiolo in one place.  Zero pretense, and no arrogant preconceptions.  Just a bunch of people coming together to learn something more about Nebbiolo by tasting wine together.  Bravo!


Decisions, decisions.


In the end our “Industry Night” at Sgt. Pepperoni’s was a total success and a whole lot of fun.  I urge you to create some kind of tasting group in your own community.  If you give people this kind of forum, they will come together.

Another thing I learned… nothing makes faster friends than Nebbiolo!