About us

The Grapevine Experience Staff includes sommeliers, chefs, authors and trained teachers. Grapevine Experience is a full service provider with a focus on Italian culture, food & wine. We believe in living an authentic experience and learning from direct tasting.

Suzanne Branciforte

Suzanne is a wine communicator who works with prestigious Italian wineries in regions throughout Italy. She is a Food&Wine blogger and created the Italian Grapevine, a blog for Italophiles, foodies, and wine-lovers everywhere. She is on-site in Italy wining and dining, meeting and greeting chefs and winemakers, the movers and shakers of the Food & Wine sector. Suzanne has visited over 250 wineries in Italy.
She is a Certified Sommelier (Italian Association of Sommeliers – AIS) and achieved a WSET Level 3 Award in Wines with Distinction. A member of the Association Le Donne del Vino, she graduated from Harvard and got her MA and PhD from UCLA. Author of the best-selling Italian language program Parliamo italiano! (VHL, 5th edition), she is the founder of the school Study in Italy.
Suzanne is director of Grapevine Experience, which she founded so that more people could enjoy the inimitable dolce vita Italian lifestyle and have fun while learning. Born in New York and a resident of Italy for the past two decades, she has lived extensively in California, France and Italy and knows that good wine doesn’t grow in ugly places.

Francesca Giuliano

Like a good Barolo, Francesca finds her roots in Piedmont. She holds a degree in Modern Literature and Culture from the University of Genoa and has been working for Grapevine Experience since its inception, assisting clients in setting up their food & wine experiences. She is also an experienced teacher of Italian language and culture.

Francesca has achieved a WSET Level 2 Award in Wines with Distinction, and Level 3 Award with Merit. She collaborates as a contributing writer for Suzanne Branciforte’s Italian Grapevine. Passionate about travel, she is fluent in French and knows that country and its wines quite well.

When she is not tasting wines from around the world at international wine fairs, she enjoys sharing a bottle of Italian wine with friends

Zoë Burgard

Zoë has been in love with the sights (and tastes!) of Italy since she first arrived in Italy. With a B.A. from Harvard and a Master’s degree from the Humboldt University in Berlin, she has returned with more languages under her belt to join the Grapevine Experience team. Originally from Boston, she has adopted Italy as her chosen home, living the dolce vita dream. She is passionate about health and wellness, and cares deeply about the fact that the Mediterranean diet doesn’t place great food and fantastic wine at odds with a healthy lifestyle.

She helps design new food and wine courses, always seeking to educate more people about the fundamental principle about the Mediterranean diet: health shouldn’t be about restriction, but rather about experiencing the joy of fresh ingredients, wonderfully prepared.

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