Q+A with Documentary Filmmaker Paolo Casalis

Q+A with Documentary Filmmaker Paolo Casalis

Do you see a connection between film and winemaking?
Yes. There are many similarities, like the long work preparing the film or the vineyard before the satisfaction of the final edit or the grape harvest, when you finally see the fruit of many long hours of work. And then there’s the artistic component: Filmmaker and winemaker both have the great privilege of creating something new, original and personal. One big difference is that while winemakers can create a number of wines each year, like the Langhe producers who make Barolo, Nebbiolo, Barbera and Dolcetto, we can only make one film a year!

When did you become interested in wine?
I started getting into wine in 2011, when I closely followed Maria Teresa Mascarello for the documentary Langhe Doc. So, my experience was a bit unusual (and lucky!). I started right off with Barolo, and I’m continuing with Barolo. But I’m not an expert. What interests me, and what I’ve gained insight into, are the men and women who make wine and their stories.

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Any specific wines you’re excited about right now?
In the last few months, I’ve been drinking Barolo, Barolo and more Barolo, and I have to say I never get bored. One producer I particularly like is Vittore Alessandria [of Fratelli Alessandria] from Verduno, my former classmate. He makes a spectacular Barolo Gramolere.

Do you have a desert island bottle?
My apologies to Barolo, but a desert island brings to mind palm trees, sun, heat, fish and a wonderful trip I took to Portugal. So, if I end up on a desert island, I want a good stock of Vinho Verde. And an electrical outlet to plug in my fridge.

Published on March 31, 2015
Topics: Wine and Film, Wine Trends
About the Author
Kerin O’Keefe
Italian Editor

Italian Editor Kerin O’Keefe reviews all Italian wines for Wine Enthusiast. Prior to her appointment with Wine Enthusiast, O’Keefe, who moved to Italy in 1991, wrote regularly on Italian wine for Decanter, as well as for World of Fine Wine and on winesearcher.com. She is a former contributing editor for Wine News magazine, and is the author of Franco Biondi Santi: The Gentleman of Brunello (Veronelli Editore, 2005), a recipient of a Gourmand Wine Book Award. Her latest two books are Brunello di Montalcino: Understanding and Appreciating One of Italy’s Greatest Wines (University of California Press, 2012) and Barolo and Barbaresco: the King and Queen of Italian Wine (University of California Press, 2014).

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