FIOL co-founder Gian Luca Passi de Preposulo Talks tradition and evolution of the prosecco market
High-quality and rooted in tradition, FIOL Prosecco is for special occasions or everyday celebrations.
Written by Jordana Colomby
After growing up around Prosecco their entire lives, Gian Luca Passi de Preposulo and his childhood Rugby pals, Giovanni and Pietro Ciani Bassetti, decided to craft their own brand. Staying true to their Northern Italian roots, the three friends set out to create a product that represented what Prosecco meant to them. They launched FIOL in 2010 and it has since been named one of the coolest wine labels of 2014 by Forbes Magazine, which is fitting. FIOL, meaning “son” or “boy” in ancient Venetian, translates to “cool guy” in modern-day Treviso.
The extra-dry Prosecco has sweet notes of crab apple and floral overtones. The bubbles aren’t overwhelming and it’s balanced enough to enjoy on its own or to mix into a cocktail. FIOL is best served chilled, and it pairs perfectly with various cuisines from around the globe.
But FIOL isn’t just another sparkling wine. FIOL is about three friends sharing their family history and love of Prosecco with the rest of the world. We sat down with Gian Luca Passi de Preposulo to talk about the inspiration behind the brand and the future of the FIOL.
Why did you decide to start your own Prosecco brand?
I grew up in the countryside of Treviso, the capital of Prosecco—I literally grew up playing through the fields. I left for Milano where I studied and worked in the fashion industry. When I was 28 years old, I got to sit with two of my oldest friends, Giovanni and Pietro, in our hometown. We decided to do something together; we wanted to merge the knowledge we gained from our industries. Fashion for me, and finance for them. We decided to create our own brand of Prosecco. Our aim is to present the highest quality wine possible, but at the same time, we want to go above what people expect of Prosecco.
How did your past experience with luxury products help you create this brand?
It helped me understand that it’s all about how you position your product in the market. If you start with a cheap product, it’s very difficult to go up. If you start by creating a premium product then you can go down a bit. It’s the same with fashion brands; it’s all about the perception.
What are your hopes for the future of the brand?
Right now we’re in the very important phase of establishing the markets in Canada, the United States and the UK. We need to create momentum. We really need to draw a line between FIOL and the other Prosecco brands. To do that we need to invest in our customers and into mixology. Mixology plays an incredibly important role because with FIOL you can make great drinks like an Aperol Spritz.
Are there any other business ventures on the horizon?
We want to establish FIOL as the leading Prosecco brand. We’re already starting to build the next product which is going to be a sparkling FIOL rosé. We’re trying to really create a blend that follows FIOL’s footsteps. For our Prosecco, we studied the blend for about one year, and came up with a balanced blend that isn’t too aggressive. We’ve won the gold medal at the Prosecco Masters two years in a row, and that’s really an affirmation of the of the quality that’s behind our company. The aim is to do the same with the FIOL rosé.