Before you say anything, as my dear art school literature teacher Giovanni Zanzi used to say, you have to start with the context. So let's talk about this context. In a few minutes it is midnight. I haven't left the house for 21 days and if Benigni saw me instead of 'Model Judith' he would shout 'Model Prisoner'. After Christmas and as a New Year's resolution, I have decided to go on a diet (again) and given the impossibility of counting calories I am limiting myself to fasting 16/8. In a word, until 12.20 tomorrow I cannot touch anything other than water or coffee. And I've just baked a pie with potatoes, ricotta, ham and tara cheese and some wonderful breadsticks (here is the super easy foolproof recipe). On the other hand, 4 hours ago I ate my last food, a pomegranate, after 10 years. And I remembered that I've never understood how to eat them, since I look like I've come out of the exorcist, and with me all my clothes and our kitchen. Distraught, I turned on Netflix, chose Bridget Jones's Diary and remembered that there is a less sexy woman than me who married Mark Darcy. Then I remembered that my husband, a 27-year-old Adonis of sorts - who by some freak of nature is also sweet, intelligent and independent - has been sleeping in the bedroom for two hours. I went upstairs to check I hadn't dreamt it.

Having defined the context you'll understand if I can be obnoxious when I'm hungry. So, a couple of weeks ago I had already come out with some mind-bogglingly sexist stuff about wine angels and company and I had kept quiet only because I had an exam a few days away and didn't have time to waste on the misogynist on duty, but at Franco Ziliani's latest pearl I couldn't resist. I wanted to resist, I swear. I said to myself, 'But yes, Chiara, let it be, he's playing Captain Phenomenon (as always) and she's riding the wave in the role of victim and getting a bit of publicity (publicity is never enough)'. But I just can't do it.

Franco, o Franco, isn't it time to stop? Let me be clear, I have the respect for you that I have for few for your wine culture and I agree with you that Laura (aka @theitalianwinegirl on Instagram) spouted photonic bullshit about the sugar ratio and worse about old Burgundies tasting like linoleum. Oi, not that I've ever sniffed the floor of my old gym. It may well be that by dint of collecting the sweat of dozens of poor, desperate people, it had some not-so-pleasant smells too, by golly. However, I was taught that people who mind their own fucking business live to be 100 years old, weren't you? Is it possible that a talent such as yours should be wasted on being hated for manners that exude many, many things except the gallantry that would even make you look interesting at your age?

Anyway before your rant I didn't know who Laura was, now I do and I like her. At the end of your article the only thing I was left with was that she is smoking hot. And she's got class, a lot of it too. You don't like her skinny? I say lucky her. If I weighed as much as she does, I'd be less in a bad mood writing to you while cake and breadsticks mock me with the knowledge that I can't touch them. I am also left with the fact that Laura has a great command of English, something I would love to have too (and instead the only 'other language' I barely master is the Romagnolo dialect).

Finally, of your professionalism I do not question 1) I have not followed you for long enough and 2) I am not here to judge anyone, but I will start by buying the 'little book' entitled "How wine changes your life"because wine has really changed my life and I am curious to read the stories of others who, like me, have been reborn thanks to this common passion.

Cheers 🍷


P.S. Have you called your friend Oscar Farinetti, the one who had the 'courage' to write the foreword, to ask him what he thinks of your (sad) article?

P.P.S. A modest suggestion: Smile, Franco, Smile! That to rosy too much you risk dying before your time....

Ah, no sorry I have one more thing to say. I have just re-read now the comment of the erbaluce producer Camillo Favaro who writes:

"I would also take into consideration the fact that not knowing wine and, very often, not even knowing the use of written Italian, they should limit themselves to cheering up the onlookers exclusively with the merchandise they have at their disposal and of which they are evidently particularly proud."

Camillo Favaro on Facebook

For all the breadsticks, but really? So, that there are wine influencers who use merchandise to collect more likes is a given. Just as it is a fact that the likes, where the merchandise is displayed, swarm by the thousands. For me, it is called supply and demand. If you criticise them for exploiting - showing more intelligence and foresight than those who offend them - their bodies as a catalyst for interactions, what words do you reserve for the pussyheads who put like on every cm of exposed female skin?

Ohibò that the pussy dead are not interested in wine we don't have to tell ourselves. However, thanks to their quick and eager likes these photos 'splash' in Explore (if you don't know what that means I'll explain it in a comment) and the bottle of wine depicted along with the merchandise is seen by thousands of people who, thanks to hashtags, are more on target with the bottle in question than with the beautiful pair of tits surrounding it. You may not like this style of communication, but that it is effective there is no doubt.

I think winemakers - if they are interested in this kind of publicity - should limit themselves to choosing the influencer who is in tune with their product. If you have a wine to propose in an environment luxury the profile of @_wineangels_ is as perfect as it gets.

If you still have doubts, however, the numbers speak for themselves.

I would never buy a packet of Barilla pasta, but the majority buy it and the supermarkets are full of blue boxes. Every time I see someone put it in their trolley I admit that I wince, but I don't fawn over the crap they are about to eat. I simply choose something else.

And I'm minding my own fucking business that I feel like living to be 100.

Mr Favaro, you simply choose something else and respect those you don't like (and the many colleagues who do, and quite a lot!). If Barilla sells millions of blue boxes and invoices what it invoices, I think you are right.

Cheers 🍷


(Now I finish Bridget Jones's diary while I clean the kitchen where the breadsticks stare at me defiantly. They practically have the same effect on me as those tits, that is).


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