Anthony Verdoni’s career has combined scholarly interests and a passion for wine and food. He enrolled in a Doctorate program at Tulane University, having received an A.B. in Curso Classico from Saint Peter’s College in Jersey City, New Jersey, in 1964. When a Jesuit Classics professor suddenly became ill in 1967, Mr. Verdoni returned to St. Peter’s College to become his substitute. He stayed for 20 years, teaching Classical Languages and Literature. His knowledge of antiquity and familiarity with Italy helped establish him as an acknowledged expert in Italian wines. His background as an instructor and coach in college aided him as a wine lecturer and author. Friends in the wine trade call him “The Wine Professor.”
His wine business debut was in 1971, as a part-time sommelier in a restaurant. Subsequently, he purchased a wine shop, and went on to become a wine buyer for two department store chains, a sales representative, and a sales manager. Highlights include: General Wine Manager for the Jaydor Corporation, one of the nation’s largest wine distributors; National Sales Manager of Southern Italian Wines for Heublein, under Philip DiBelardino; Vice President, National Sales Director for American BD Company; Vice President, Marketing Italian Wines for Winebow.
He has also worked closely and directly with many prominent Italian wineries. Brands which he has helped to develop in America include San Felice, Ceretto, Mastroberardino, Casal Thaulero, Librandi, Carpineto, D’Angelo, Regaleali, Umberto Cesari, Due Torri, Franco Cesari, Biondi-Santi, Vietti, Monteschiavo, and Villa Girardi.
Mr. Verdoni has enjoyed the challenge and satisfaction of launching new fine Italian wines in America. He has lectured and conducted tastings and seminars throughout the United States and Europe. He has written many articles and training manuals, and has co-authored The Sommelier Executive Council’s Vintage Wine Book, now in its third printing. He has been a member of the Sommelier Society of America, the Caterina de Medici Society, and the Society of Wine Educators, as well as a board member of the Sommelier Institute of New Jersey. Mr. Verdoni has received awards and commendations from the American Wine Society, the Culinary Institute of America, and Johnson and Wales. The Italian Trade Commission has awarded Mr. Verdoni a lifetime achievement award in recognition of his work in popularizing Italian wines in the United States.
Mr. Verdoni consults for restaurants, importers, distributors, and wine shops throughout America and Europe. When not on the road, he conducts wine dinners, seminars, and restaurant training programs – and, as always, helps people discover the fine wines of Italy. He has co-authored a new book, 21, and appears in the TV series “Eat! Drink! Italy! with Vic Rallo.”