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Food and Wine

A Pennsylvania Winemaker with a Mission

Posted by Emily Wiley on 08/03 at 03:38 PM

Gino Razzi is a man on a mission. The Italian immigrant is determined to change the landscape of Pennsylvania wines.

Razzi moved from southern Italy to Delaware County in 1962. He provided American connoisseurs with the finest European wines for over three decades, and in 1995, he decided to open operations in his own backyard.

In 2004, Razzi purchased a winery in Eddystone near Chadds Ford. He called it Penns Woods Winery – a tribute to William Penn – and injected new life into its 25-year-old vines.

“I was astonished by the results,” he says. “I discovered it is possible in Pennsylvania to produce great wines.”

Razzi believes the grape is the reason for a great wine, and so he increased the quality of the fruits at Penns Woods. He’s produced award-winning cabernets, chambourcins, merlots, and chardonnays.

“I’ll sit with anyone who wants to bring a bottle of the world’s best wine and taste it beside mine,” he states matter-of-factly.

Razzi is convinced that Pennsylvania has the capability to produce world-class wines, but the state needs to invest in the industry.

“The best thing the state can do is give us good labs,” Razzi says. He is lobbying to bring labs into Delaware County that would provide testing facilities for crushing, fermentation, and bottling.

Razzi is also donating one dollar from every sale of Penns Woods wine to advancing wine and grape research in the state. He would like to see Penn State and the state of Pennsylvania invest in a viticulture infrastructure – from agronomists to soil scientists to vineyard staff – similar to that of New York, Virginia, or California.

Penns Woods Winery is one of eight Pennsylvania wineries joining WPSU for the Second Annual Wine Celebration on Sunday, September 19. Learn more about the event and buy your tickets today.

{name} Author: Emily Wiley
Bio: WPSU Multimedia Producer | Wife and Mother | Lover of Food and Photography | One-Half of The Culinary Couple

Comments

Posted by Ted Liberti
08/04 at 05:05 PM
University Park, PA

The 1WineDude.com Top 10 Most Interesting Wines of 2009
[http://bit.ly/WineDudesTop2009Wines]

2007 Penns Woods Chardonnay Reserve (PA) - Vanilla, tropical fruit, very good acidity. Might be the best east Coast Chard. I’ve EVER tasted. Period.

What, another oaked Chard on this list?  What the hell is happening to me?!??

Penns Woods is no stranger to this blog, because I love what winemaker Gino Razzi is doing there, and his `07 Chard has made the list because it’s the most balanced and nuanced white wine from the East Coast U.S. that I’ve ever tasted. 

I’ve been following this one from its inception in stainless steel through barrel sampling and at multiple points after being bottled.

The amount of fruit that Gino has been able to coax out of these PA grapes is astonishing, and it was clear early on just how special this Chardonnay vintage was, and that the wine was capable of standing up to as much oak treatment as Gino was willing to give it.

It’s drinking beautifully now, a minor triumph really, and a new benchmark for PA and East Coast wines.
- Joe Roberts, CSW/SWE and WSET Advanced Level III Certified

Join us to meet Gino and Carley Razzi at this year’s 2nd Annual Penn State WPSU Wine Celebration where you can sample and taste their wines.  Penns Woods Winery’s obsession with quality, great fruit and fine wine making reflect the future of PA’s best wines. Gino’s wines are wines to be “reckoned with!!” - Ted Liberti, WSET Advanced Level III with distinction

Sunday, September 19, 2010
The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel
Tasting Event and Auction: 1 - 5 p.m.
Ticket cost is $60 each in advance and online, $75 each at the door. For tickets, see http://bit.ly/PennStateWPSUWineTickets

Posted by Ted Liberti
08/22 at 03:23 PM
University Park, PA

Sat down recently in Chadds Ford with Gino Razzi at his Penns Woods Winery to taste his Proprietor’s Red, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and white Merlot to name but a few.

His whites are very expressive wines, very aromatic indeed.  The white Merlot just explodes out of the glass and is a summer treat.  Gino’s reds are highly well crafted, concentrated and balanced wines.  Speaking with Gino, tasting his wines, you know you are in the company of someone who is on a mission to put PA wines on the map, the global map.

Make sure to stop by his Penns Woods Winery table to meet Carley Razzi and sample what PA wines can be.

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