Luiz Alberto, #winelover. Founder of the #winelover community, member of the Circle of Wine Writers, judge at International wine competitions, wine educator and communicator. /•/ Philip S. Kampe, #winelover: Growing up in New Orleans has opened my eyes to the world of wine, food, and culture. My heritage is a combination of French, British, and Hungarian. Add eight years of European life coupled with a wife of Italian roots and you will understand my journey into this amazing world.
Sunday, May 8, 2011
Brazil: thoughts after one week of tastings
After spending my first week in Brazil I’m now flying back to the motherland. I had such a wonderful time in Brazil, in this huge and frenetic country of the South America, where you feel little bigger than a grain of sand on the Guarujá beach. Walking down the Paulista Avenue or on the Oscar Freire street or moving around in one of the luxuries malls of São Paulo, you will realize that there are plenty of Brazilians are eager to spend money. Nothing is enough expensive for them. The dramatic economic growth that Brazil is enjoying since the beginning of the millennium is increasing the living standards of its population. But poverty still remains. It is a country of contrasts that the music helps to balance, but it is getting too expensive. Brazilian currency, real, is very strong, reducing the competitiveness of the economy, and making not recommend for tourists. However, on the other side, it makes imported products cheaper, fomenting the its consumption.
The main purpose of my trip to Brazil was, of course, wine related. São Paulo hosted during the last week the major wine fair exhibition in Brazil, Expovinis, where not only producers show their products, but also major importers exhibit the portfolio they are distributing. Regarding the possibility of accomplishing our mission, that we defined late last year – to find an importer for our wines – Expovinis revealed quite interesting. We developed some good contacts and hopefully the interest and expectations Brazilian created on me, will bring results.
What else did I do during my one-week in Brazil? Beside a couple of business meetings, I also poured our wines in two tastings organized by the IVDP, one in São Paulo and other in Curitiba. Also in São Pualo, together with The Wine Hub, we organized and gave a Port Wine seminar, as we have been doing in Europe. This time the audience was very special as some clients of Meu Estudio, a design company that made all the layout of the presentation we use in our seminars, joined us. Some friends from São Paulo also joined us for this Port and Douro wine tasting event, that happened to be my best day in Brazil.
When someone talks about Brazil, you may think about football, beaches, samba or Carnival. But in terms of food, I’m sure that on the top of your mind is picanha and all the delicious grilled meat that Brazilians expertly make. So, on Saturday at lunch time, I went with my friends Luiz Alberto, Arnaldo Nacarato, among others, to Fogo de Chão, one of the best churrascarias of São Paulo. Luiz brought 10 bottles of wine with him, while I put two bottles of Port on the table. We were 6 in total, resulting in a pretty generous ratio of almost 2 bottles per person. The food was delicious, some bottles of the wine were wonderful, helping to explaining why we ate for over 7 hours, making this the longest lunch of my life!! My mum advised me not to lose weight during this trip. I was just honoring my promise to her!!!
I want to go back to Brazil and to visit again the Alberto and Nacarato family in Capivari and Beto and Maria Clara in São Paulo. And also go to the beach of Guarujá and enjoy a caipirinha with Nilce and Arnaldo. Life is good and we have to enjoy it.
Have fun and don’t forget to let me know your comments and questions.