The international conference on spirits


On Thursday 19 and Friday 20 May 2011 Forum Aquavitae will be organising “The Future of Spirits”, international conference on global spirits markets and trends with the support of the International Organisation of Vine and Wine.

University professors and researchers from all over the world will be convening at Borgo Antico San Vitale, the headquarters of the Forum Aquavitae, to discuss the technological and market situation of the world’s major distilled spirits: rum, whisky, vodka, cachaça, armagnac, brandy, pisco, aguardiente and fruit aqua vitae.

Also present of course will be grappa, the Italian distilled spirit par excellence, to which will be dedicated a whole session to assess the situation of this sector from both a technological and market viewpoint. The session dedicated to grappa will also be enhanced by a panel discussion with communication and marketing experts.


Spirits – as alcoholic drinks with minimum 15% alcohol strength by volume are called in the European Union – represent in the world a universe estimated in 20 billion litres, but volumes are very likely much higher and are almost certainly equivalent to those of wine (25 billion litres) coming second only to beer.

For Italy, third exporting country in the world, they are of great importance, not only economically, but also from a historic and cultural viewpoint.

The large category of spirits also includes distillates, distilled drinks that maintain strong ties with their areas of production, both in terms of links with tradition and the reflections on their sensorial profile of the ecosystem in which they are made.

In reading their names – Grappa, Armagnac, Cognac, Brandy, Whisky, Rum, Cachaça and so on – our mind evokes countries and rites, local costumes and gastronomic heritages. They are not therefore only an economic asset, but are made up of experiences, real doors onto an imaginary world, the salt and quality of the earth.

For the first time in Italy, researchers from all over the world have been invited to speak about this rich and complex universe. They will talk about the distillates they know best, about its origins and history, about production economics and technology, about consumption and the rules for enjoying it to the full.

The meeting will be staged in the setting of the Borgo Antico San Vitale, in the heart of Franciacorta, in the province of Brescia. The complex, which has been completely restructured, includes an experiential route, an experimental distillery, a meeting room, a sensory analysis room and a wine-bar restaurant.

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