This just in from the department of semiosis…
Above: A vanity shot of Italian wine scion Lamberto Frescobaldi (photo by Herbert Lehmann).
In an interview last week, American wine pundit W. Blake Gray asked Florentine aristocrat about 2008 accusations that his Brunello (Castelgiocondo) had been purposely adulterated by the winery. With skillful sprezzatura (dissimulation) worthy of a Renaissance courtier, Frescobaldi neatly responded that “In the beginning of 2008, our wine was suspended from the market. After eight months, after a lot of analysis, it came out that everything was fine. The wine was given back to us. We could start selling the wine.”
What he omitted is the fact that he couldn’t sell the wine as Brunello di Montalcino and the fact that he and his lawyer were both convicted by the Italian courts of selling adulterated wine.
According to the article, Frescobaldi was sentenced to three months in jail for the crime (although the penalty was reduced to a fine).
W. clearly states on his blog that some of his content is advertorial in nature and I wonder if Frescobaldi paid for this coverage. Gauging from how W. cheers Frescobaldi’s unabashed passion for “New World” wines (W.’s term, not his subject’s), I wouldn’t be surprised…
Lamberto, you may be slick. But you’re no Baldassare Castiglione!