Winecouture International Edition
  • International Edition

Cantine Giacomo Montresor: growing performance in the Far East

Over 130 years of history but a young soul. Cantine Giacomo Montresor leaves behind a Vinitaly which strengthens it in the awareness of being a milestone of Valpolicella wine, thanks to the iconic satin bottle of Amarone, but also the confirmation of the dynamism registered by its productions towards the new world markets, with particular attention to the Far East area. Now, the objective for the historic Veronese company is to promote new strategic openings on the international market.

“We return from the Vinitaly event with two fixed points,” explains Pierluigi Ferrari, general director of Cantine Giacomo Montresor from the beginning of 2024. “First of all, the request for lightness in terms of wine styles, packaging and sustainability of the supply chain. Hence our choice of sober, light and elegant bottles, as well as the beginning of the path to achieving Equalitas certification in the future. Furthermore, in 2023, again in this direction, we invested in sustainability, starting from energy saving with the implementation of photovoltaics and a new purifier completed in 2023. The other element of awareness, from the event just behind us, lies in the diversification of international markets, opening up forcefully towards Northern and Eastern Europe, as well as the Far East, in particular China, Japan, South Korea and Thailand”.

Cantine Giacomo Montresor: growing performance in the Far East thanks to the iconic satin bottle of Amarone of Valpolicella.
Pierluigi Ferrari

The growth of Cantine Giacomo Montresor: exports are worth 50% of the turnover

The growth of Cantine Giacomo Montresor therefore continues. With a particular focus on performances across the border. The export share, in fact, today reaches 50% of the total turnover, with the North American market (Canada first and foremost) leading due to the strength of a brand distributed since 1969, followed by the on-trade channels in Great Britain and Switzerland , with an expansion that is affecting other areas.

Today the wines of Cantine Giacomo Montresor travel to over 50 countries around the world, with a simultaneous presence in the Horeca channel of the Italian market thanks to an excellent production that starts from the typical wines of Valpolicella such as Amarone and Ripasso and which reaches to cover denominations such as Bardolino, Lugana, Soave, and Prosecco.

All this in a journey spanning over 130 years which saw a decisive change in 2018 with the change in governance which led to a change of pace for the company. Not only has turnover grown more than double in the last six years, but at the same time a whole series of investments have been made that have changed the face of Montresor: construction of a new fruit drying room for the drying of the grapes destined for Amarone; new bottling line; completely renovated cellar; birth of the Wine Museum dedicated to the history of the company; new experiential wine shop.

There has also been an acceleration on the quality certification front with the achievement of the BRC and IFS (HACCP-based agri-food chain certifications) in 2021, and the imminent achievement of the Equalitas certification.

A Lugana in the white satin bottle is coming

At the center of the path of relaunch and growth of the historic reality of Valpolicella there is an excellent production which starts from the typical wines of the area, such as Amarone and Ripasso, but which reaches to cover denominations such as Bardolino, Lugana, Soave, and Prosecco.

A path of quality attested by recent prestigious awards from important international guides as recently happened for some references: the Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Capitel della Crosara 2016 which obtained 92 points from James Suckling, one of the most authoritative critics of the wine scene international; and the Amarone Valpolicella Satinato 2019 which received 92 points from Falstaff, the leading magazine on the German market.

Cantine Giacomo Montresor: growing performance in the Far East thanks to the iconic satin bottle of Amarone of Valpolicella.

The peculiarity of the “mula” satin bottle, a true identifying “brand” of the company’s quality production, whose history also well represents the innovative drive of Cantine Giacomo Montresor since the early twentieth century, is not overlooked in the attestations. Designed by Giacomo Montresor in 1904, a synthesis between the glass bottle and the flask, the “mula” was exported to the USA for the first time in 1906. The transport by ship of the cases of wine exposed to the sun on the deck of the ship caused oxidation and refermentation . So it was that in 1921 Giacomo began to frost the bottle to protect its precious contents. Today Amarone Satinato is the emblem of the company and of Valpolicella itself, present in over 50 countries around the world.

In 2023, the satin bottle underwent a major renovation confirming the path towards sustainability undertaken by the company. Maintaining the characteristic shape with sinuous curves, the bottle has been lightened to a weight of 420 g, approximately 1/3 of the original weight. The lightweight bottle is already in use in countries more sensitive to the use of containers with a lower environmental impact such as Northern Europe and North America.

An important innovation which also gave rise to an expansion of the range with the introduction of a new reference: a Lugana in the white satin-finished bottle in light glass.