We were asked recently to answer some questions about the business. Dario is our Wine Director and is based in Italy. He was first off the mark (I’m putting it down to time difference!) and given that our wines and producers have been clocking up awards left, right and centre we thought it only fitting that we gave him the stage. Over to you, Dario (loud applause!)
1. Who is Art House Wine?
"Art House Wine is a contemporary wine brand that is currently pursuing the latest wine treasures that have yet to be discovered in the UK. We want our winemakers’ wines to look appealing, taste phenomenal, and give customers the chance to discover new varietals from the hundreds of indigenous varietals Italy has to offer (highest in the world)".
2. What do you do?
"I select the wine for Art House Wine by tasting as many wines from as many regions, here in Italy. Enotecas have become my office, and if a wine varietal, label, bottle shape or simply a glass of what they've got open that day, becomes of interest, it's tasted!
Having the opportunity to visit the vineyard and meet the winemakers makes it all the more visceral and rewarding. There's a sense of kindred spirit and a bond that you feel when someone welcomes you into their home and shares their life passions with you".
3. Why only Italian wine?
"I think it's important to specialise in one or two things, so you can put your sole focus on maintaining the highest standard in that particular field/product. So, having an affiliation with Italy from day one (I was born there) lent an obvious choice as to where we were going. Plus, Italy has so much going on in terms of regional food and drink that you're always spoiled for choice. I also think that what's coming out of Italy now in terms of wine could be looked at as pioneering".
4. 3 words that best sum up AHW?
"Glass Always Full!"
5. Which is your favourite wine?
"It's hard to name a favourite so I'll whittle it down to one white and one red: white - Falanghina from Terra di Briganti; red - Etna Rosso from Piano dei Daini".
6. What do you love most about Italy?
"The thing I love most about Italy is the lifestyle. There's a chaotic order by which I mean there's a rule of thumb for most things and only by integrating in Italian life, will you begin to see/understand those. Just to use a few examples, if it's raining, you use an umbrella. Cappuccinos are drank solely in the mornings. Dinner is eaten at least after 20.30. And lastly, whenever you drink wine, you eat food".
Very enthusiastic wine lover who loves a party!