admin On novembre - 18 - 2013

PHOTO Starting from bottom right clockwise: Marcello Gamberale Paoletti, Walfredo della Gherardesca, Guido Serra, Alessandro Losio, Nicolò Zambello, Federico Pastre, Gaddo della Gherardesca.

Interview by Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi

Lorenzo Vinci’s team represents the Italian quintessence of food and wine, by exploring all fields of gourmandise through a variety of kitchen courses, videos, private dinners and elite events. The brand coalesces an Academy, that unveils the art of cooking, with a Deals section, that provides a sale service reserved to a private community of users, and Export Counselling, where this young brand has already established itself in Italy, China, Hong Kong, Russia and Kazakistan.

Three are the main locations with a common thread: Luxury and elegance. The headquarters is set in a hip loft of via Ortles 45/A in Milan, whereas the other two alluring venues are in the Tuscan Maremma, in the Castle of Segalari near Bolgheri and in Cala del Bove, set in the breathtaking seaside area of Monte Argentario.

The successful start-up has been conceived by a group of young men, in their late twenties who have built their bones in corporate structures in the fields of business and law, and decided to team up to spread the art of Italian cuisine around the globe.

If number seven represents luck in many cultures, it seems to set a good omen for Lorenzo Vinci’s seven creators: Walfredo della Gherardesca, Marcello Gamberale Paoletti, Nicolò Zambello, Federico Pastre, Gaddo della Gherardesca, Alessandro Losio, Guido Serra.

Adjoining this group of shareholders, are the mentors of each culinary discipline within the Lorenzo Vinci Academy. Lello Panello takes care of the greatest food classics with Grandi Classici; the Cardazzi Sisters are in charge of Aperiti-amo (pun tribute to those who love classy happy hours); Nicolò Zambello gives tips to make fast and effective dishes with Quick & Chic; Paolo Porfidio is the wine expert in the section Il Calice di Porfidio; Roberto Zito will be dealing with Alta Cucina (Haute Cuisine); Matilde Scarmellini quotes a very famous Italian movie (‘Bread, Love and Dreams’ starring Gina Lollobrigida and Vittorio De Sica), for her area of specialisation Pane, Amore e Fantasia;  and for all those who have a sweet tooth the referent is Silvia Minola in charge of Zucchero Q.B. (i.e. Sugar Quantum Sufficit).

This fantastic team has the objective of ensuring to the best Italian gourmet producers the possibility of distributing their products through the most innovative, modern and effective marketing and sale channels.

But let’s find more about it, from the brand’s Co-Founders and Managing Directors  Walfredo della Gherardesca and Marcello Gamberale Paoletti, along with Shareholder and Chef, Nicolò Zambello:

Currently “Food” is the new gold in business, what differentiates Lorenzo Vinci from other brands in the field?

Walfredo We think that the core feature of our company is that for the first time we are launching a flash sales website that is also connected to all our social networks and our blog. We thusly created a direct channel between us and the consumer that covers the product’s details, along with the meticulous reconstruction of its Italian heritage. This virtual platform is sided by a physical space within our loft, where producers of farm businesses may meet and present directly their products during our events. Hence the online consumer is connected with the producer: this provides full transparency, to ensure the product’s quality. Another unique trait of Lorenzo Vinci is connected to the brand’s other spots in Bolgheri and Cala del Bove, where the main focus is on high-luxury tourism, specifically for wine and food events, where the actual landlords of the mansions will tour customers offering them a unique experience. This differs from lodging in a 5 star hotel, since we are talking about ancient family residences, like the Castle of Segalari, that will give the chance of living an authentic and incomparable experience of a lifetime. Not only will our guests share a piece of the Italian aristocracy’s history, by meeting the descendants who will be their tour guides, but they will also have the chance of seeing in person how the products are made, like for instance the wine produced in that area.

Marcello The idea behind Lorenzo Vinci is that in Italy there are so many small and medium producers that aren’t able to promote themselves and make their products available all over the country, not to mention in Europe and the world. Lorenzo Vinci was conceived with the idea of helping and promoting these products to export them. The selection process is fundamental, since there are so many good products but there are also phoney products that get proposed on the market. So our objective is to focus on the smaller producers, on the basis of the awards and positive feedback they’ve accomplished on guide ratings. We contact them and offer our services to bring their products on our platform and give them the exposure they need, through our video channel on YouTube, as well as our magazine, and insert their products within our events and tasting sessions. On our E-Commerce platform we show all the features of the product and underline the reason why a specific product has been selected. Naturally, the fact that the product is available online and can be tasted in the Lorenzo Vinci loft, gives clients the opportunity to try the product before buying it. This occurs through our private sales, every fortnight, where a new producer is introduced to our customers, who get a taste of his products, which either in our headquarters or online are sold with a remarkable discount. Our main issue is reliability, this is the reason why we adopt this method.

How did you create the team?

Walfredo: I like to believe I was somehow the thread who connected us all, because I met one of our shareholders, Federico Pastre in the corridors of the law firm we were both working for. We wanted to do business together and bonded at once, eventually I involved the friends I’ve always relied on, and we ended up introducing to each other our most trusted people and we all shared the same vision.

Nicolò As for the chefs, we picked young people who had the qualities we were looking for to build up a full cooking course that would cover all the kitchen basics from fish to meat, all the way through to desserts and we also found an excellent sommelier to take care of the wine tasting course. Along with the Academy’s cooking courses we’ll also be having some show cooking events with some important chefs as special guests, like Fulvio Pierangelini.

Besides Fulvio Pierangelini, are there any chefs who inspire you?

Nicolò Simone Rugiati is very young, he’s 27 years old and he’s amongst the first people who made TV programmes related to food, in a fresh way. He’s really smart and several of his recipes inspired me, whereas among the really famous cooks there’s Davide Oldani, he’s Milan based, just like Lorenzo Vinci and he’s a true inspiration.

So far what fairs have you covered?

Marcello So far we have attended two fairs: one was the SMAU in Italy, which had always been focused on technology and has gradually expanded to innovation and new ideas in all kinds of business start-ups. Lorenzo Vinci was invited and the company was introduced with great success, also because we were offering samples of our food and wine tastings, and people could directly test our products. Whilst in May, Lorenzo Vinci attended another fair, where we introduced one of our producers which was Amarone della Valpolicella and Prosecco Superiore di Valdobbiadene. We brought it to Shanghai, at the SIAL Fair, and in Beijing, during an event hosted by the Italian Embassy. Both those Chinese occasions were a success and as a result Lorenzo Vinci is now exporting Aneri in China.

What is Lorenzo Vinci’s vision in relation to the Slow Food Movement promoted by Carlo Petrini?

Marcello Lorenzo Vinci, undoubtably, intends to promote all the characteristics of the territory, and the local traditions, preserving and promoting the Italian heritage. Hence on these grounds Lorenzo Vinci, completely shares Carlo Petrini’s vision.

In simple words how would you sum up the Lorenzo Vinci concept?

Marcello The Lorenzo Vinci experience (which is intended to be exported in any country) is based on the information of the products we represent, that occurs through our blog: customers get acquainted with the producer, the product can be seen through videos and photographs on our platform and tested through our tastings (in a physical place) and eventually can be purchased online (e-commerce), with exorbitant discounts that shift from 10% to 60%.

The weekly events and courses organised by Lorenzo Vinci, as well as the variety of products they represent, are all available on



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