We met Robbin many moons ago while she was living in Italy. Robbin is an amazing wine educator and mentor and a wonderful person. We’re happy to introduce you to her and her fantastic new project. Meet Robbin…
Casa Mia: Tell us about you and how you came to Florence.
Robbin Gheesling: After 15 years in the music business as an audio engineer, I turned my attention to food and wine. While studying for the WSET [Wine & Spirit Education Trust provides globally recognized education and qualifications in wines and spirits, Ed.] I fell in love with Italy and its winemakers and wanted to introduce the world to my new friends through tourism. I won the Premio Famiglia Fede from Middlebury College and moved to Florence in 2013. (A grant for business owners who need to improve their Italian).
CM: What is your inspiration behind the book?
RG: In 2013, only a handful of people seemed to know about the wine doors and those that did know, were the very obvious ones. When I found a single, slim, 10-year old book about the wine doors of Florence at the library, I felt like it was a very undiscovered part of a well-traveled city.
CM: We asked Robbin to share a bit about one of the wine doors to give us a taste…
RG: There are three current wine producing families that have been producing since the introduction to the wine doors: Antinori, Frescobaldi and Ricasoli. The wine door on Palazzo Antinori is found down the alley to the right, next to Ristorante Buca Lapi.
CM: What do you hope that the book conveys?
RG: The currently available book containing my original photography conveys just how ignored and abandoned they were. The book I am going to write this fall organizes all the doors into self guided walking tours. We have a general history of them, but I ultimately seek to discover individual histories of each door. Along each walking route will be places to stop for a drink or snack and enjoy the small, artisan producers of Florence and Tuscany.
CM: Where can people purchase your book?
RG: Until July 30th, you can order books and prints on Kickstarter. The photo book and prints will ship immediately and the guidebook will ship in fall 2022. After July 30th, you can purchase them from my website.
Thank you Robbin, we hope to see you in Florence soon!