I was born in New York City and raised in Caracas, Venezuela. After almost a decade living in New York City working in private banking. I decided to move to Miami to turn my long-time wine passion into a business venture.
Vinonueva is a project that we, as a couple, decided to launch out of our passion for wine, our search for a change of scenery and industry and our desire to bring to Miami an approachable way to buy and enjoy wine.
Rather than giving you a standard bio, here are 5 fun questions that we hope will allow you to know us a little better.
First wow moment with wine?
BV: One of my closest friends, a Piedmont aficionado, invited me to taste a bottle of 2006 Barbera Bricco dell’Uccelone. For me, that single bottle marked an awakening that ignited my curiosity for wine that keeps growing every day.
ACB: It all started in fall 2014, when Bernardo lured me into agreeing to an intensive trip to Piedmont. At first, I was skeptical about it, but I must admit that the experience transformed me – as some would say, it was my ‘aha moment’ with wine. This trip opened my appreciation and passion for wine that marked the beginning of a journey in my life.
How do you define a great wine?
BV: Wines are like people you need to get to know them and understand their depth before passing judgment. Some wines give a great first impression but can become flat and boring over time; others might need to be allowed to open up to show you their full potential. I try not to judge a wine by a single glass but rather a full bottle because I want to see it evolve before I draw a conclusion. However, what makes a great wine truly exceptional is the subjective: the place, the time and the people you’re sharing it with.
ACB: Wine is a personal choice. Most probably what a great wine is to me, it’s not necessarily to others. Understanding wine comes from drinking a lot of it. It’s less about right or wrong, nor budget and more about your personal preferences. With time I’ve discovered what I like, I’ve learned to appreciate each wine for what it is and found that every occasion calls for a different one.
Would you ever let anyone else choose the wine at dinner?
BV: Actually, yes, I do. I’ve found that it is one of the best ways to learn something new. The thing I enjoy the most about wine is tasting new things and expanding my horizons, I’m always looking to push the envelope. When I find someone that has a good criterion, I usually accept their suggestion to try something new. Truthfully, that’s how I’ve discovered some of my favorite wines.
ACB: When I’m out to dinner with friends I enjoy choosing the wine. It’s my opportunity to show them why I fell in love with it and also get them excited. I love trying to find the perfect bottle for the occasion, it’s like a guessing game. I anxiously wait for them to take the first sip and see their reaction. Sometimes I’m right and sometimes I’m wrong. At the end it’s all about having fun and discovering it together.
What does personalized service mean to you?
BV: Is about not being transactional but rather developing a personal relationship with clients. When someone comes into VinoNueva they’ll be dealing with us regardless of their taste and budget. We like to take the time to know our clients: their likes and dislikes, what they love about wine and what wine means to them. This allows us to put new wines on their radar that they can love but weren’t even aware they existed. And this is a two-way street, we also feel that by getting to know them we could also learn a great deal. The wine world is large and vast and knowing every wine in every region is impossible.
ACB: It’s all about the experience and the experience is in the details. While I’m passionate about wine, the natural-born organizer in me loves planning tastings, making sure gifts are perfectly wrapped, deliveries on time and the store impeccably merchandised. I’m here to make sure that no detail is overlooked and that you leave our store looking forward to come back.
Do you need to know wine to enjoy wine?
BV: No, enjoyment is about the experience more than the knowledge. The more you know, the deeper the experience. But for me the real way to enjoy wine is by sharing it with the right people.
ACB: Not at all. It doesn't matter if you are a collector or just a wine enthusiast like me. Wine means enjoyment and any excuse is valid. There’s nothing more rewarding than a glass of a wine you like, after a long day at work or at home with the kids.