…spontaneously fermenting

A Winemakers Dinner – Fulvio Bressan

Event:  Bressan Wine Maker Dinner

Restaurant:  Jacob’s Bar & Kjøkken

Date:  Saturday, March 13th 2010

Host:  Fulvio Bressan, Vinosseur, 213 W Wine Imports

I have done a producer profile on Bressan in past posts, but nothing I have written could have prepared me for such a down to earth warm person such as Fulvio.  Energetic and outgoing, Fulvio entertained everyone at our table and the other tables as we made our rounds to introduce him to our guests.  I thought I was going to have my work cut out for me with the translating from Italian, but it turns out that Fulvio’s grasp of English is very good, making my job a little easier.  The turn out was better than anticipated with a completely full restaurant with even a few tables being turned.. for quaint little Bergen, this is quite a feat!

Fulvio speaking to some dinner guests

Bressan not only entertained the guests’ questions, he even managed to sneak over to the bar guests who stopped in after the local football (soccer) game and befriend them!  Behind this outgoing, down to earth person, lies an amazing wine maker, even more amazing is his approach to viticulture.  Although he is as natural as he can be, their is a lot of science going on here, especially when it comes to harvest.  The effect that the harvest of healthy grapes has on the final wine is tremendous!  In fact, harvesting even one day “too soon” or one day “too late” can make a significant difference on the final wine.  (click on the images below to enlarge)

Notes from a genius wine maker I - Fulvio Bressan 2010/03/13

Notes from a genius wine maker II - Fulvio Bressan 2010/03/13

Fulvio spoke of how much one or two days effect the maturity of the grape, what climate does to the maturation curve (sugar versus phenolic maturity), volatile acidity relating to date of harvest, and hours of light exposure effecting grape maturity.  He even spent a few minutes discussing oxygen exchange differences between different size oak barrels, the smaller the barrel, the thinner the wall diameter, the greater the oxygen exchange (and oak influence).  The most important thing to understand here is that most of his science, and the most important part of it, is out in the vineyards – especially when it comes to the exact date to harvest – probably the single most important.  He also mentioned that the only thing he does out in the vineyards is the copper and sulfur treatment, but never after the 31st of July.  And, he never harvests before it has rained, so that the grapes can be rinsed.

Enough said, now on to the dinner and the pairings!



Yogurt Sorbet with Citrus and Olive on Toast



Porchetta, Apple & Apricot Compote with Lime, Radicchio Rosso


2006 Verduzzo Friulano

Comments:  The delicate dried apricot aromas in the wine matched perfectly with the compote.



Baked Saithe with Blackened Leek, Crispy Spring Onion, Artichokes and Scallop and Mushroom filled Ravioli


1999 Cru Pignol

Comments:  When I spoke to Fulvio on the phone about pairing his Pignol with a fish dish, he thought we were crazy.  When he tasted the dish, he was stunned!  The combination of fish, burned leeks and mushrooms created the link between the wine and the dish.



Confit of Duck Leg, Green Lentils with Fried Chicken Liver with Bayleaf Sauce


2004 Schioppettino

Comments:  The pepper notes in this wine and good acidity paired especially well with the green lentils and liver


Locally made Jørnsberg Cheese with Tomato Sorbet and Brioche


2001 Ego (50% Schioppettino 50% Cabernet Franc)

Comments:  Although I rarely use a dry red wine with cheese, this wine was great with the cheese and tomato sorbet (slightly sweet).  We got mixed reviews on this dish.  Many guests expected the “dessert” to be something sweet, rather this was an Umami filled dish which was for many of us at our table, one of the best pairings of the meal.

Category: 1 WINE, 2 PRODUCER PROFILE, 7 WINE MAKER DINNERS, Bressan, Bressan Mastri Vinai- Friuili-Venezia Giulia, Italy, Events, natural wine (100% living wine)

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4 Responses

  1. I knew I was missing out, damn!! Really like the wine note scribblings, cool, and great fotos of great food and wine, what a night it must’ve been!!

  2. ed says:

    Bressan is quite nice but if I may an unrelated question.
    Since you are the Cornelissen expert 😉 could you let me know which one I should order, Munjebel Bianco 4 ’07 or the 6 ’08? Can’t find them in the shops here so it will be via internet. Thanks.

    • vinosseur says:

      Hello Ed!

      Sorry for delayed response – been offline for the most part over the last two weeks due to travel.
      If I had to chose, I would go for the Munjebel Bianco 5 (2008) vintage. This was so fantastic in my opinion. The Bianco 4 was also great, but I loved the structure of the Munjebel 5 (think red wine here ;-)). I hope this helps!


  3. ed says:

    No problem.
    Thanks. Went to Vinnatur and had a change to taste Cornelissen. Going to order something to taste at home. Met some of your Norwegian friends who told me they worked with you. I think they bought the whole production of Donati ;-)) It makes me smile to know so many interesting wines flow to Norway. Do you know Quarticello btw? Completely different from Donati but quite nice stuff. And Albani?


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Vinosseur is the company name of sommelier Joseph R. Di Blasi. is his web page where he writes about wine, food, restaurants and other gastronomic experiences.

Joseph has a special place in his heart for quality wines from the old world, especially France & Italy, with a strong focus on Organic, Biodynamic and Natural wines.

Joseph grew up in Italy and California, but left The States in 2002 and now resides in Poland.

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