January 21, 2018

James Suckling | Roma to Sonoma

James Suckling believes millennials will change the way the world approaches wine. The members of his small staff of innovators are all under 30, and he relies on them heavily to influence the look and feel of his brand.  These days, James Suckling does more than write wine reviews, he produces wine-related documentaries, puts on international wine events, and collaborates with luxury designers to create new products for the wine industry.   James divides his time between his homes in Napa Valley, Tuscany, and Hong Kong.  Napa Valley is the site of the premier wine scene in the US, so it makes sense that he has a base there.  He lived in…

April 13, 2017

The Nerellos of Sicily | Roma to Sonoma

“Cabernet is to John Wayne as [Nerello Mascalese] is to Marcello Mastroianni.” Alberto Graci, Graci Winery, Passopisciaro, Sicily The beating of the windshield wipers fought to keep up with the pummeling rain, and I could hardly see through the glass as I slowly inched my rented car along the deserted road at dusk. I saw a small arrow-shaped sign on the right side of the road and came to a complete stop a foot in front of it, trying to read between wiper strokes. I was almost sure that it said “Firriato,” and so I followed the arrow’s direction and turned on a long narrow road, drove through an open…

August 20, 2016

Healdsburg | Roma to Sonoma

Healdsburg, California Most famous for its authentic small-town charm, Healdsburg is a requisite stop as you wind your way through Sonoma wine country. “I grew up near here and I’ve watched Healdsburg go from just a tiny town to a top destination spot in Sonoma. It’s not as well-known as Napa, but that only makes it more special to me,” says Lila Brown, a concierge travel expert based in Healdsburg. Healdsburg Native Lila, a sommelier, returned to Healdsburg after stints in Italy, Greece, and Spain. We asked Lila if she could put together a casual Healdsburg day plan, and she graciously obliged us with an eight-step plan to a perfect…