Valentina Passalacqua - Began cultivating her family's 80 hectares of land just north of Puglia.
How many years have you been in the business? Tell us briefly about your background and your current position today.
It all started 12 years ago with motherhood that gave me the courage to change the course of my life. As an entrepreneur in stone mining I chose to return to my origins and listen to the most authentic part of myself. The natural wine, bearer of message of love and light, was the result.
Did you have a particular “aha!” moment that propelled you into wine?
The birth of my first daughter who inspired in me the dream of contributing to the realization of a better world where the land is used responsibly in order to deliver to future generations a safe and healthy planet.
What is the most rewarding part of your job?
I’m like a volcano that finds its eruption when it creates a new wine.
Can you describe any prejudices you’ve experienced in this industry as a woman?
In Southern Italy it is not so common for women to take care of their own farm. To fulfill my dream I had to make sacrifices ten times harder than men to prove my hard work.
Women are victims of the patriarchy as well, and often are harder/more judgmental of other women as a result. How can we as women become more aware of our own prejudice towards each and change that behavior?
By being inspired by values of sisterhood, kindness, cooperation and teamwork— that makes dreamwork.
When it comes to wine, what benefits do you think we’ll see as a community by better supporting women?
More strength, more union, generosity and mutual support.
What changes do you hope to see in regards to women in the wine industry in the next five years?
Wines made by women who transfer their sensitive and feminine part into their wines.
What message do you have for women entering the wine profession?
Be yourself, don’t be afraid. Let the beauty and femininity in you come out and put it into wine and in your relations.
What does equality in the wine industry look like to you?
It means to remove all the prejudice between men and women, without competing with men but exercising synergy. I’ve seen so many powerful women lose their opportunities just because they were waiting for someone else’s permission. There is no permission slip— you just have to be powerful.
In what ways would you say you are contributing to equality in wine?
I transfer my emotional part to make a wine that evokes emotions in people. In addition, you have the chance to inspire many young girls too, to have the courage to believe in their dreams and realize them.
What are some defining characteristics of a wonder woman of wine to you?
To have the courage to revolutionize your life by going outside the lines and transferring their interior beauty directly to the wine.
What other women of wine do you admire and why?
Each woman can inspire me. I admire specifically Jenny Lefcourt, an avant-garde woman who has been a pioneer in the discovery of natural wine and has inspired many other women to believe in their dreams and to not be afraid of prejudice and inequalities.