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Died Benito Nonino, father of quality grappa

Famiglia Nonino, al centro Benito sulla sedia a rotelle

Last night at the family home-farm in Friuli, Italy, Benito Nonino, the man who transformed grappa from a tavern distillate into a fine product, passed away.

ANSA NEWS. He was 90 years old and, together with his wife Giannola, had turned the small family business that produced ‘sgnapa’ into a world-renowned brand.

Benito Nonino died in his very own company home in Percoto (Udine), the center where he was born on February 6, 1934. Benito and Giannola, an inseparable couple, had three daughters, Antonella, Cristina and Elisabetta who work in the company, as well as several grandchildren.

Passionate about the distillery business from an early age, he made the first “Monovitigno Picolit” grappa in 1973. A shy but proactive man, long confined to a wheelchair, he had also asked to be brought to the distillery yesterday afternoon.

Over time and as the brand grew nationally and across borders, Benito and Giannola established the namesake Nonino Prize, which has a jury of high international cultural standing and over the years has awarded more than five writers who would later receive the Nobel Prize.

The editorial staff of DoctorWine and editor Daniele Cernilli join the family’s grief and offer their deepest condolences.

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