“Clearly is at the top of its class of anything of its type made in Italy,” writes Robin Kelley O’Connor (left) for the Italian Wine Merchants website, “the Barone Pizzini Rosé Franciacorta NV is a sparkler that puts Champagne on notice. The Barone Pizzini estate in Franciacorta, located in the province of Lombardia, in an idyllic setting of rolling hills in the district of Lake Iseo with an ever present view of the Alps. Franciacorta, a DOCG, is not only the name of the winemaking district but it also indicates the production method known as ‘metodo classico,’ the same protocol used in Champagne. Made from a typical Champagne grape blend of 80% Pinot Noir and 20% Chardonnay, this wine derives from organic grapes and it has a low production of 19,200 bottles. This wine has a lovely salmon color with an aroma of raspberries, strawberries and red flowers. On the palate, it’s flavorful with loads of red fruit flavors and a long extended finish. It’s pure class.”
Robin is a leading U.S. wine authority and a thirty-year veteran of the trade. Here’s his bio from the Paulée website (the Paulée New York is one of the city’s premier wine events).
A leading wine educator, international wine judge, wine writer, and sommelier, Robin Kelley O’Connor recently joined Italian Wine Merchants (IWM), where he’ll be adding his thirty years of experience, authority and passion to seminars, dinner events, sales, offerings and wine education. In addition O’Connor is currently involved in the wine program at Tark’s Restaurant in Lutherville, Maryland outside of his native Baltimore. Robin was previously Lead Specialist & Head of Wine, Americas for Christie’s Auction House. Prior to Christie’s, he was Director of Sales and Education for Manhattan wine and spirits retailer Sherry-Lehmann. Preceding Sherry-Lehmann, he was Trade Liaison and director of trade and consumer education in the Americas for the Bordeaux Wine Bureau for 20 years. Robin holds Certified Specialist of Wine (CSW) and Certified Wine Educator (CWE) certifications from the Society of Wine Educators and passed the Court of Master Sommeliers’ Certified Sommelier exam. As a popular wine educator and spokesperson, he has conducted over 2,500 seminars; written for the Trenton Times, Santé Magazine, Wine & Spirit; and served as senior editor for Kevin Zraly’s Complete Wine Course 25th Anniversary Edition. For over a year during 2008-2009 he traveled around the world with Kevin visiting over 20 countries, 80 wine regions, 500 appellations and tasted more than 7,000 wines.