06 Jul In Vino Veritas, In Aqua Sanitas! (In wine there is truth, in water there is health!)
Luigi Di Caprio, owner of Campania Wines Ltd, says…
My company was established in July 2011 to showcase the wines and produce from the Campania region of Southern Italy. My parents were both from the Campania region, and as children growing up in the UK, we ate mostly Italian food, not realising it then, that the food we were eating was regional to the Campania region & not ‘Italian’.
As a grown up, I often felt that the produce found in supermarkets and even deli’s that were marked as ‘Italian produce’, were not authentic enough for me as they didn’t distinguish the regional, cultural, historical differences the country experienced throughout its existence. This led me to see if it was viable to create an online store, where people who had visited the region on their holidays and experienced the wonderful wines and foods there, could re-create their experiences at home.
The Company, has seen sales growth year on year, and with the addition of specialist items such as gluten free pasta that actually tastes like ‘real’ pasta, seen us a one stop shop for all quality wines and special produce from the Campania region.
The wines that we stock reflect the quality of wines that the Campania region has to offer. Our biggest challenge is to try and get our products to those consumers who like wine, but have never tasted wines such as Fiano Di Avellino, Greco Di Tufo, Falanghina, Aglianico and stick to ‘international’ varieties such as Cab Sav, Merlot and Chardonnay.
The prices of our wines start at £10 a bottle right up to £60. Our wines are not cheap, but reflect the quality and ‘terroir’ of the region. We also stock wines from boutique wineries available to us who provide a point of difference between ourselves and other wine merchants.
Attending wine fairs is partly the answer in giving an online business face to face contact with the public. This gives us an opportunity to open a few bottles of wine and give the consumer an opportunity to try some of our wines-all of which are not available in supermarkets or off-licences. Suffice to say that once tasted, we are able to convince them to buy a bottle or two!
The upcoming Feast Grinstead (Sunday 1st October-East Court) is an event that we are looking forward to attending and will give us an opportunity to engage with our local customers. We also attend markets in Forest Row, Balcombe & Chelwood Gate where possible.
Another way in trying to shout about our products in a very competitive market, we engage with our customers via monthly emails, explaining our products or highlighting successes the business has (Sussex Digital Awards-Best Online Retailer).
We also provide private wine tastings to Wine Appreciation Societies or groups of individuals who love wine and would like to know more about our products. And as our wines are so food friendly, we also like to showcase our food too. If you would like to know more about this service, please email me at [email protected]
We use social media Twitter, Facebook & Instagram to promote our products-food & wine is so photogenic!
We have recently linked up with a local company called The Firepod, who make portable pizza ovens and we have seen success in terms of publicity and orders. Some of our products such as 00 pizza flour, passata and selected beers are on their website which makes it a good fit for both businesses.
We would love to supply local businesses with our wine and products for events they may wish to hold. If an EGBA member would like to discuss this further then I would be very happy to have a chat.
We do not want to become a wholesaler to pubs or restaurants as this would detract from our business model.
Since the EU referendum, we as a business have seen prices for both produce and transportation costs rise quite rapidly due to the fall of the value of sterling. This has lead to retail price increases across the whole of the range which we cannot absorb. The recent uncertainty has led to our business expansion plans curtailed until some semblance of normality has been set.