Wine, Surfing And Movies
Jason Baffa is an award-winning filmmaker who has traveled the globe to make movies highlighting the love of surfing. The films, "Singlefin: yellow," "One California Day" and the newly released and award winning, "Bella Vita," embrace the inspired life of the care-free surfing sub-culture.
While filming “Bella Vita” in Italy with surfer-environmentalist Chris Del Moro and winemaker Piergiorgio Castellani, Jason earned the nickname of Zio Baffa, or “Uncle Baffa.” The crew of surfers created a film that not only celebrates surfing, but wine as well.
What happens when you turn surfer-environmentalist-entrepreneur types loose in the vineyards of Italy? Some handcrafted artisan wine that reflects the laid back surfing subculture.
Ziobaffa has released two Italian wines: the 2012 Toscana Red and 2013 Pinot Grigio. Both wines are organic with a focus on sustainability that also is reflected in the packaging and bottle.
We’ve Never Seen A Wine Bottle Like It
Before we tell you what’s in the bottle, we must tell you about the bottle itself. All of the energy used in manufacturing (100%) is from renewable resources. All of the paper used for the label is Forest Stewardship Council certified and is produced from raw material obtained through sustainable farming practices. The labels are printed with non-toxic ink and affixed using bio-friendly, non-toxic glue.
The closure is the most unique we’ve ever seen. The innovative Helix reusable cork closure is a joint project of Owens-Illinois and Amorim, a leading cork producer.
Helix consists of an ergonomically designed stopper made from cork, in combination with a glass bottle with an internal thread finish in the neck to match grooves molded into the cork.
There’s no need for a corkscrew, you simply “unscrew” it. It also tightens up quite well, making a good seal to preserve your wine – if any is left.
But What About The Wine Itself, Dude?
Both the Pinot Grigio and Toscana Red are estate produced wines. Traditional methods are used with modern machinery.
The 2013 Pinot Grigio is a fresh tasting wine with apple and pear notes. It is finished in stainless steel to maintain the bright flavors. We had it nicely chilled at the end of a hot day and it was rejuvenation in a bottle. This is a solid Italian Pinot Grigio that will pair nicely with seafood.
The 2012 Toscana Red is 80% Sangiovese and 20% Syrah. The estate harvested grapes came from the Poggio Al Casone Vineyard, the home base for the filming of “Bella Vita.” To add to the coolness factor, the wine is made from grapes harvested during the filming of the movie.
In the glass the wine is a deep, inky purple. On the palate there is red fruit and a Sweet Tart flavor. The wine was not aged in oak. Normally we would say, “hurrah!” However, the tannins were a bit too soft for us and the wine could benefit from a bit more structure.
Ziobaffa wines are an expression of a creative, easy-going lifestyle. The combination of organic farming, a focus on sustainability, innovative packaging plus tasty wine is appealing indeed. Perhaps Ziobaffa is the next big wave in winemaking.
Full disclosure: The wines were provided as marketing samples.