Fabrizio Santarelli in New York

Castel de Paolis winemaker and Lazio consortium president guest of honor at I Trulli

Domenico Valentino's Amelia Di Marco shares an aperitivo of LINI910 Labrusca Bianco with Fabrizio Santarelli at I Trulli.

Domenico Valentino's Amelia Di Marco and Fabrizio Santarelli enjoy an aperitivo of Lini's Labrusca Bianco at I Trulli. Photo James Taylor.

Fabrizio Santarelli of Castel de Paolis arrived in New York this weekend. His visit to the United States provided him with a great opportunity to promote not only his own wines, but also winemaking as a whole in the region of Lazio, and he was our guest of honor at a Lazio-themed dinner for Domenico Valentino clients and wine professionals, held last night at I Trulli.

In addition to owning the Castel de Paolis winery in Grottaferrata, Fabrizio was recently elected president of Le Vigne del Lazio, a consortium of 23 producers whose common aims are wines of quality and the promotion of the region’s product. Lazio is certainly less-revered than Tuscany or Piedmont among wine enthusiasts, particularly outside Italy. But as Fabrizio explained to last night, “The only problem with wines from Lazio is letting people know about them — and taste them!” Fabrizio himself worked in New York until 2001 and delighted in promoting his own wines to buyers and consumers in the city, and of course was “excited and encouraged” by their unanimously enthusiastic response.

I Trulli owner Nicola Marzovilla

Fabrizio's wife Alessandra looks on as Fabrizio and I Trulli owner Nicola Marzovilla discuss wine (probably). Photo Alex Dominguez.

Fabrizio enjoyed the spotlight and was happy to discuss his wines, proving an engaging host together with I Trulli owner Nicola Marzovilla and Domenico Valentino’s Jim Hutchinson. The menu, prepared especially for the occasion by Chef Patti Jackson, featured dishes typical of the region, paired naturally with Fabrizio’s best wines. Guests were treated to the following dishes and wines: saltimbocca di triglie and Campo Vecchio Bianco 2007, timballo di riso and Donna Adriana 2007, and grigliata mista and Campo Vecchio Rosso 2004. To end the meal, a selction of formaggi pecorini were served with two vintages — 2004 and 2001 — of Fabrizio’s blend of Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot, otherwise known as I Quattro Mori.

Frank, Nicola Marzovilla, Gianfranco, Alessandra (Fabrizio's wife), Fabrizio, Domenica Marzovilla.

From left: Dr. Frank Butler, Nicola Marzovilla, restaurateur Gianfranco Sorrentino, Alessandra, Fabrizio, I Trulli manager Domenica Marzovilla. Photo James Taylor.

Fabrizio and his wife Alessandra have spent the rest of their time in New York presenting Castel de Paolis’ wines to clients and promoting winemaking in the region. But there was still time to sample some authentic East Coast diner fare, including scrapple sandwiches and microbrewed lager in Williamsburg!

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