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RAW WINE™ Speakers’ Corner

October 27 & 28 2019  |  #rawwinenyc

Food for thought. A collection of talks & tutored tastings taking place at the New York fair, all free with your ticket. Unless otherwise stated (see below for further details), places at each talk are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis so make sure you turn up early to avoid disappointment.

(Full biogs and talk information being loaded this week, so check back soon!)

Speakers Corner at RAW WINE New York 2016

Thanks to the support of the Austrian Wine Marketing Board , the Nation Wine Agency of Georgia & our media partners Heritage Radio Network.

heritage radio network

Sunday, 27 October 2019

11:00 – 12:30

Natural Wine Legends: Celebrating the life of Ernesto Cattel, Costadilà

With Martina Celi (Costadilà), who worked alongside Ernesto for years, in conversation with Megan Krigbaum (PUNCH).

One of the pioneers of natural Prosecco, Ernesto Cattel became a posterboy for artisanal winemaking in a region whose international success in the early 2000s saw both the vineyard and cellar become industrialised. As the demand for Prosecco grew internationally, growers abandoned their old hillside vineyards in favour of the easily mechanisable, easily sprayable, high-yielding valley floors. In 2005, Ernesto and a group of friends decided to do just the opposite, buying up parcels in the pre-Alpine foothills of Treviso. What followed was the development of a polycultural ideal that was as much about growing plants and nurturing livestock as it was about making delicious wine. Ernesto adopted biodynamics (one of the first to do so in the region) and went on to become one of the most strident advocates not only for clean farming but also of traditional Prosecco col fondo (‘sur lie’), whose international revival is in no small part thanks to him. So next time you enjoy a glass of cloudy Prosecco, take a moment to raise your glass to this force of passion and love who sadly passed away in the summer of 2018 at just 54 years of age. Join us for a look back at his life through a collection of 8 of his wines, and learn more about what made Ernesto just so unique.

Wines being featured:

  • 450 slm 2017
  • Ultracosta (Ernesto Magnum)
  • Màt 2010
  • Ombretta Agricola 2017
  • Ratto 2006
  • Móz 2017

Spaces are especially limited for the Legends tastings. To reserve a space, please contact

13:00 – 14:30

Stefano Bellotti - Cascina degli Ulivi

Natural Wine Legends: Celebrating the Life of Stefano Bellotti, Cascina degli Ulivi

With Ilaria Bellotti (Cascina degli Ulivi), Stefano’s daughter, in conversation with Alessandro Trezza (Have & Meyer). A talk-tasting.

Ask anyone in the natural wine world and they will probably know of the celebrated contadino, Stefano Bellotti. He started making wine in earnest back in 1977 at the age of 18, with the help of an elderly neighbour in Piedmont who showed him how to make wine traditionally – which of course meant naturally. Over the years he grew his 1 hectare of vines into a poly-cultural, self-sufficient haven where he bred animals, grew vegetables, harvested honey, made bread, cheese and of course wine. It became a model of the closed-loop farm – a piece of paradise in the now urban Novi Ligure. A biodynamicist since the early 80s, Stefano was known for his frankness (which occasionally saw him going head-to-head with the Italian authorities), for his welcoming nature, for heading up the grower association Renaissance des Appellations in Italy, for his delicious, wholesome produce, and of course for his incredibly complex, long-lived, upfront, no nonsense, authentic wines. He sadly passed away in September 2018 but is succeeded by his daughter Ilaria who has taken over the reins at the farm. Join us for an exceptional comparative tasting of Stefano’s wines, featuring 4 pairs of vintages past, each a decade apart, and learn more about the life of this extraordinary man.

This tasting will feature the following wines:

  • Filagnotti 2002 vs 2012
  • Montemarino 1998 vs 2008
  • Nibio 2001 vs 2011
  • Barbera Mounbè 1996 vs 2006

Spaces are especially limited for the Legends tastings. To reserve a space, please contact

15:00 – 16:00

Young, Gifted & Natural – the challenges of going solo for young natural wine makers

With Megan Bell (Margins Wine), Alex Pomerantz (Subject to Change), Chad Hardesty (Hardesty Cellars) & Cole Thomas (Madson Wines), in conversation with Chloe Sorvino (Forbes Magazine)

From hidden startup costs to inventory management, young winemakers talk about the challenges of going solo, and the business lessons learned along the way.

About Chloe Sorvino

Chloe Sorvino is the staff writer at Forbes Magazine who leads all coverage of food, drink and agriculture, from secret billionaire suppliers behind our food system and publicly traded CPG companies to natural foods startups and the fast-changing ag tech landscape. She heads up the 30 Under 30 Food and Drink list, as well as the Forbes Ag Tech Summits franchise. Her reporting for Forbes has brought her to In-N-Out Burger’s secret test kitchen, drought-ridden farms in California’s Central Valley, a billionaire-owned slaughterhouse in Omaha and even a chocolate croissant factory designed like a medieval castle in Northern France. Her work has been featured in the Financial Times and NPR, among others.

No reservation needed for this talk. Places are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis on the day.

16:30 – 17:30

Getting Under the Skin of America’s Hybrid Grapes

With Lewis Dickson (La Cruz de Comal), Deirdre Heekin (La Garagista Farm & Winery) & Ryan Stirm (Stirm Wine Company) in conversation with Alice Feiring (The Feiring Line)

Hybrid grapes are on the verge of shedding their vile reputation. We’re not just talking acceptance, we’re talking praise, praise for their ease of farming, flavor and potential vineyard savior status in the age of climate change. In part this new dawning for these grapes is a direct response to work done with them in the world of natural wine.

However, we use the word hybrid, but do we really know what they are? Are they franken clones as so many believe them to be? Naturally occurring or well, something else? Will your beloved Burgundy pinot noir one day be planted to Black Spanish? Will the new Trousseau be Marquette? Come and geek out about this, learn the truth and taste some beautiful examples that, we bet, will stun you.

No reservation needed for this talk. Places are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis on the day.

Monday, 28 October 2019

11:00 – 12:30

Stanko and Saša Radiikon - Radikon

Natural Wine Legends: Celebrating the Life of Stanko Radikon, Radikon

With Saša Radikon (Radikon), Stanko’s son, in conversation with Sam Benrubi (Heritage Radio Network). A talk-tasting.

After a eureka moment in 1995 when he decided to macerate his ribolla grapes on their skins (to reproduce his grandfather’s methodology), Stanko Radikon never looked back. So pleased was he with the results that his entire production followed suit in 1997. He lost customers, was shunned and vilified by many in the trade who denigrated his methods, only in time to become one of the world Kingpins of Orange Wine. In fact, he is perhaps the man who has had the most profound influence on completely natural orange winemaking anywhere. His wines were always farmed cleanly, experienced no temperature control, no addition of sulphites (or any other winemaking aids or additives), and were only ever released after years of maturation (the estate’s current release is 2014, for example). Although he passed away unexpectedly on 11 September 2016, his son Saša took up the mantle. Join Saša to learn more about his father’s legacy and explore a unique collection of back vintages by Stanko, including a wine from his 1995 vintage!

Featured wines include:

  • Oslavje 1995
  • Oslavje 1997
  • Oslavje Fuori dal Tempo 2001
  • Ribolla 1999
  • Ribolla 2003
  • Ribolla 2004
  • Merlot20 1997
  • Merlot 2000

Spaces are especially limited for the Legends tastings. To reserve a space, please contact

13:00 – 14:30

Lorenzo Corino

Natural Wine Legends: Celebrating the work of Lorenzo Corino (including a tasting of his 1967 vintage!)

With Lorenzo Corino, in conversation with Sam Benrubi (Heritage Radio Network). A talk-tasting.

Lorenzo is the epitome of a (living!) Legend – extremely knowledgeable, he creates wines of immense beauty (in fact his bottles have achieved cult status in the Far East), while also managing to be humble and generous to boot. He has given his life to viticulture and winemaking, and his wines are testament to his skill and love of the vine. He is a 6th generation winemaker from a family of natural wine producers in Costigliole d’Asti, and although he manages the family vineyard, has devoted most of his adult life to agronomical research. He has authored & co-authored more than 90 technical and scientific publications on viticulture, authored a book entitled The Essence of Wine and Natural Viticulture and has even developed the Metodo Corino™ – a patented, clean farming methodology that is all about getting to grips with the fundamental value of soil capital (which he developed alongside Antonella Manuli of La Maliosa, a vineyard in Tuscany that Lorenzo has consulted for since its inception). He also happens to produce some of the purest and most profound examples of Nebbiolo and Barbera around. Join him for a look back at his life in wine, exploring what he has learned along the way and tasting the evolution of his work through a selection of 8 vintages, including a taste of an exceptionally rare bottle – a completely natural Barbera from 1967!

Featured wines include:

  • Barbera ‘Bricco’ 1967
  • Barla 1996
  • Barla 1997
  • Barla 2003
  • Barla 2011 (late harvest)
  • Centin 2003
  • Centin 2007
  • Centin 2009

Spaces are especially limited for the Legends tastings. To reserve a space, please contact

15:00 – 16:00

Understanding Austria – The Home of Biodynamics

With Stephanie and Eduard Tscheppe-Eselböck (Gut Oggau), Matthias Hager & Johannes Zillinger, in conversation with Amanda Smeltz (Estela and Cafe Altro Paradiso)

Get to grips with the fundamentals of this Austrian farming philosophy that has, over the last century, literally taken the wine world by storm, helping vines thrive and flourish, producing wines of intense vibrancy and purity. But what is Biodynamics really about? How does it work? Where did it come from? Why was it needed and, most of all, why is it still relevant today? Explore this fascinating world with the guidance of some of Austria’s foremost biodynamic growers and makers.

No reservation needed for this talk. Places are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis on the day.

16:30 – 17:30

How and Why Wines in Qvevri Develop Differently To Wines Made in Other Vessels

With Iago Bitarishvili (Iago’s Winery) and Taylor Parsons (WholeCluster) 

Does shape matter? Why? Is there terroir in clay? What about the beeswax used to seal the pores of the clay? How do the grapes move differently during fermentation in a qvevri because of the shape? Are qvevri the most “neutral” vessel you can use or does it impart an “otherness” to the wine? AND, how on earth do you keep those porous vessels clean? Ah, the questions that run through our head when contemplating wines made in qvevri.

Join iconic Georgian winemaker, Iago Bitarishvilli while Taylor Parsons (who has been traveling to Georgia for the last four years, tasting and assessing every wine he can get his hands on) peppers Iago with these questions that both uphold and challenge myths of qvevri wines. We will be walking through a flight that includes a Rkatsiteli aged in qvevri for 12 years.

No reservation needed for this talk. Places are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis on the day.