I’ll Drink to That: Joy Kull of La Villana Winery

Episode 366 of I’ll Drink to That! was released recently. It features Joy Kull of La Villana, a winery she recently co-founded in Gradoli, Italy.

Joy Kull was a hospitality school student at Cornell when she developed an interest in wine that would in a short amount of years take her to Italy to explore winemaking hands on. Finding a secluded crater lake surrounded by vineyard terraces miles from Rome, she decided she had found her terroir. After working for a year at a winery in the area, she has taken up the founding of her own establishment, dedicated to the local grape varieties of the region. In this episode of I’ll Drink to That! she discusses finding her way with wine, and to Italy. She also examines her willingness to embrace the traditions represented by the old contadino (farmers) of the Gradoli hills, while mixing in her own brand of new ideas. The mix is heady with the floral smells of native Aleatico grapes, and the hard work of putting in a new winery where there wasn’t one before. Ever consider risking it all to start over as a winemaker in Italy? For Joy, there didn’t seem to be any downside to exploring vineyards at high elevation.

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I’ll Drink to That is the world’s most listened-to wine podcast, hosted by Levi Dalton. Levi has had a long career working as a sommelier in some of the most distinguished and acclaimed dining rooms in America. He has served wine to guests of Restaurant Daniel, Masa, and Alto, all in Manhattan. Levi has also contributed articles on wine themes to publications such as The Art of Eating, Wine & Spirits magazine, Bon Appetit online, and Eater NY. Check out his pictures on Instagram and follow him on Twitter: @levi_opens_wine