Mattia Scarpazza Dip WSET is a head sommelier at Petersham Nurseries in London, wine journalist and has recently started his own podcast series 'Looking into Wine'.
Q: How did you start your career in the wine trade?
A: I started in Italy working weekends in a wine shop. My career in wine flourished in London working in restaurants as a head sommelier. Then following my passion for writing and communication I started my Podcast 'Looking Into Wine'. I'm still at the beginning of my career.
Q: Which is your favourite varietal and why?
Q: What is your favourite wine to drink?
A: If I was going to pick a wine to drink to savour the moment it would probably have to be an aged Riesling or a Bordeaux. I have found them very comforting at times.
Q: In your opinion which is the best winemaking country in the world and why?
A: For its diversity and near unlimited opportunities to find something new, I would say Italy. However I'm open to trying wines from all four corners of the world.
Q: Why should customers ask a Sommelier for advice in a restaurant?
A: A Sommelier that knows their wine list is a best friend in a restaurant, they can help you find something new and thrilling or bring you to somewhere through the wine that it is suggested.
Q: What is the most expensive wine you have ever tasted?
A: I think that the most expensive wine was a Screaming Eagle from Napa Valley recent vintage, definitely one for an occasion.
Q: What is the best advice you can give to customers when looking for a wine off the shelf or in a restaurant, should they look at price, varietal, or reserve on the label?
A: I would look at styles of wines that I’m familiar with and I would ask for something that will be similar. If someone is available to help, ask them for assistance. There is always, on a list or on a shelf, something that could be your next favourite wine. Remember that styles vary, within region or varieties. So always worth double-checking. Even a quick search online or on Vivino helps.
Q:What is the best wine/food pairing in your opinion?
A: I like to explore different variations on pairing, I am starting to enjoy rose wines especially slightly richer style with many dishes, if I have to pick one it would be asparagus with eggs and with a Spanish dry rose.
Q: What is the most unusual wine/food pairing you have come across that really works?
A: An aged off-dry Vouvray with Beef Wellington.
Q: Which lesser known varietals would you recommend customers to try?
A: Red Pais from Chile, an alternative to Pinot Noir and White Dry Furmint from Hungary, a spectacular variety.
To find out more about Mattia and to listen to his Podcasts - 'Looking into Wine' please see the links below: