Learn all about Chianti, in China. The first Chianti Wine Academy has been set up and is dedicated to wine professionals who will have the opportunity to learn about the history and culture of Tuscan wine, first of all, going on to study the production chain and policies in defence of the product, taste 30 different labels and analyse pairings with food.

After the debut in Shenzhen, with the first teaching sessions on the 20th and 21st of September, the Chianti Academy moves to Guangzhou and then Shanghai, ending its tour in Beijing on the 29th and 30th of September.

To qualify as a Chianti Wine Expert, approved by the Consorzio Vino Chianti with a certificate from the first official Chianti d.o.c.g. Wine Academy, the candidate is required to attend four different modules of lessons and pass a final exam.

At the moment, 80 students have enrolled in each of the four cities involved and the courses have been organised with the support of Interwine in Guangzhou, one of the leaders of the Chinese trade show market and the Consortium’s partner for promotional activities in China for several years now.

So what do students of the Chianti Academy study? Lessons begin with the history of Chianti wine, starting from the Etruscan civilisation. They analyse the production chain of the appellation, the Tuscan culture linked to the wine, the defence of the product and production regulations. 30 different labels chosen by the Consortium among all the existing and representative product types are all presented for intensive tasting.

The students of the Chianti Wine Academy will also have the opportunity to learn about very current issues, such as food and wine pairing, consumption by a young target, product communication and marketing.

“China is one of the most attractive markets for Italian wine”, – explains the chairman of the Consorzio Vino Chianti, Giovanni Busi – “in recent years, the growth in exports has been accompanied by an increased focus on training and a better knowledge of the Chianti product, a symbol of Tuscan culture and of Italian excellence in the world. This is what spawned the idea for the Academy, as an important step to consolidate the presence of the products made by our wineries, in a country with a population of 1.3 billion people”.

Figures released by Nomisma reveal a 3.3% growth in exports of Italian wine compared to last year. Exports of bottled Italian D.o.p. red wines performed less well, with a variation of just 1%, while Tuscany’s D.o.p. red wines did better, at +11.3%, recouping much of the previous year’s decline in exports.