Viva Nonino: Prestigious award ceremony and big anniversary
What was once intended as recognition for winegrowers who had rendered outstanding services to the cultivation of indigenous grape varieties, has now become an institution.
Every year, the Nonino family awards its "Premio Nonino" to deserving personalities of international standing and has thus created a monument to itself. The ceremony for this year's winners of the "Premio Nonino" took place recently. At the same time, the 50th anniversary of another milestone was celebrated: Grappa Nonino Monovitigno Picolit.
When you say Nonino, you inevitably think of world-class quality grappa. This is what the distillery from Friuli is known for and for which it has been highly regarded for more than a century. But the family behind the empire has long dared to look beyond its own sector. They would like to pass on recognition to personalities who have rendered outstanding services in other areas and made a valuable contribution to humanity, society and culture.
It all started very small. With the aim of having autochthonous grape varieties officially recognised, the idea was born to award prizes to winegrowers who have contributed to their cultivation and the success of the project.
Two years later, a prize for literature was added to the "Nonino Risit D'Aur", and two further categories followed until 1990. In the meantime, the honour has found its way into numerous areas of society. The prizewinners include writers and philosophers as well as physicists, doctors, agronomists and activists. Six times the award was even given to later Nobel Prize winners! Forward-looking projects were also repeatedly awarded prizes.
The winners of the year 2024
Premio Nonino Risit D'Aur - Barbatella d'Oro 2024: Angelo Floramo and Cooperativa Isieme "Frutti di Pace"
Premio Internazionale Nonino 2024: Alberto Manguel
Premio Nonino 2024: Rony Brauman for Doctors Without Borders
Premio Nonino 2024 a "Un maestro del nostro tempo": Naomi Oreskes
Grappa Nonino Monovitigno Picolit: a masterpiece celebrates its birthday
During the ceremony, not only were the award winners celebrated, but the spotlight was also turned on a pioneering achievement from Nonino itself. Almost exactly 50 years ago, the grappa that was able to set standards was created: Grappa Nonino Monovitigno Picolit.
Making history requires dedication, love and determination - values that have always characterised the Nonino family. Theirs is a story with many significant chapters. They all bear witness to a path that has taken the family business to the top of the world of distillation.
It was in 1897 that Orazio Nonino set up his distillery on wheels in Rochi di Percoto, a small village in the province of Udine in Friuli. This laid the foundations for the Nonino distillery's history, which is characterised by innovation and a deep connection with the region. 76 years later, in December 1973, Benito and Giannola Nonino laid another milestone with great courage and determination; they revolutionised the production method of grappa and began to distil the pomace of the Picolit grape separately. The result is still a masterpiece today: Grappa Monovitigno® Nonino.
Giannola and Benito succeeded in bringing a waste product to the fore. "From Cinderella to princess", as Giannola describes this small revolution. Both recognised that this is precisely where the autochthonous essence of the Picolit grape comes into its own and that the authenticity and freshness of the marc has a decisive influence on the expression of the grappa.
What happened back then in a small group of houses in Friuli became a model for new and existing distilleries and set standards in a sector that today combines the oldest agricultural traditions in Italy.
Grappa Cru Monovitigno Picolit - 99 Falstaff points
The Cru Picolit, considered by many connoisseurs to be the best clear grappa in the world, is made from Picolit grapes. On the nose a scent of honey, aromas of figs, quinces, very delicate and elegant, on the palate notes of fresh bread crust, some fresh honey, with floral hints, pleasant and long in the finish. Grappa, pure and unadulterated.
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