Individual CVs



Alessandra Bottaro came to Britain as an accountant – and little more!

Initially she developed a career in business, culminating in her appointment as European Manager for Spillers Ltd, whilst also teaching Italian at Harwell Nuclear Centre to scientists working at Ivrea through the auspices of Western Language Laboratories as well as teaching Italian children born in the UK of Italian parents on behalf of the Italian Government.

After marriage and giving birth to two sons, she returned to the world of business, but as an organiser and developer of outgoing and incoming fact-finding trips for mainly small groups of government officials in the field of agriculture, horticulture and viticulture. Countries visited included Italy (A.I. Centres, Rauscedo, Lamborghini Tractors, Verona Agricultural Fair etc.), Holland, Greece, New Zealand, the USA, and a number of central and southern African countries.

In 1992 she was appointed Secretary of the Agricultural Department at the Italian Trade Commission (ICE) offices just off Piccadilly, with subsequent and rapid promotion to Trade Analyst for the Wine Dept. Here she soon created a vibrant Italian wine promotion operation which continued seamlessly for two decades through the arrival and departure of several departmental Directors.

In addition to organising significant numbers of trips to Italy, often accompanying UK buyers and/or members of the UK wine press, Alessandra was also invited as an international judge for wine competitions in most European countries as well as countries outside Europe as diverse as the USA, China, Turkey, Argentina, Chile, Venezuela and Uruguay.

Apart from day to day assistance for potential Italian wine exporters, she also supervised and controlled large numbers of Italian exhibitors at the London Wine Fair over many years.

And, in her spare time, Alessandra also took a degree in Philosophy at Birkbeck College, London University and assisted Avv. Arturo Barone to compile his book A to Z of Italian Wines.

However, having left the Italian Trade Commission at the end of 2011, Alessandra then created Allora Solutions, a wine and food oriented PR company designed to effectively continue her work in this field and utilise her hard-won expertise.


Almost immediately, her new company was offered a permanent contract to carry out PR work for one of the UK’s largest and most successful Italian wine importers whose innovative work is consistently recognised with citations and nominations.

In addition, Alessandra has played a major role in organising the second “Real Italian” wine tasting at Church House, Westminster, together with organising the associated Masterclasses given by Masters of Wine – and has been retained for an expanded role for future events.

So, success beyond her dreams…. And already several companies want her to take up their PR activities, whilst a number of Italian producers and regions are anxious for her to organise trade trips on their behalf, assisting in placing their wines in the UK market and helping UK companies to find suitable products from Italy.

However, it is imperative that Allora Solutions do not dilute their efficiency by spreading their activities too thinly. Whatever they do, they undeniably do well, and are anxious to maintain consistency.



Until 1978, an international business career with senior positions up to Managing Director included responsibility for Southern Europe and two C.E.O. positions in the U.K. before spending two years as head of division for Toyota in Saudi Arabia. In 1978 Brian purchased Bowlish House Restaurant, a Palladian Georgian country house where internationally recognised cuisine was matched with a wine list twice winner of the U.K. Wine List of the Year Award and twice runner-up. For his last two years at Bowlish House Brian was chef-patron and also wrote two successful books on wine.
He then leased the business in 1988 to concentrate on full-time writing, broadcasting, photographing, lecturing, judging and consumer marketing consultancy on wine and food-related subjects, with especial emphasis on development of new wines specifically designed for the UK market.

MAGAZINES contributed to -
Wine and Features Editor for Hotel & Restaurant and Restaurant magazines and Wine Correspondent for Pub Food, Caterer & Hotelkeeper, What’s Cooking?, Your Business, Venue and six others; Italian Specialist writer for Harpers, WINE, Drinks Business and Decanter; general wine writer for Wine & Spirit International, Off Licence News, Wine Enthusiast (USA), Wine (S.A.) and several others.

WINE – Which? What? Where? When? and Why?
Jordan’s Guides to a) Supermarket Wines and b) High Street Wines
Jordan’s Guide to Good Wines, hardback, 256pp, over 100 photographs
Major contributor to Global Wine Encyclopædia (Australia) (responsible for 23 of the 58 countries), also named contributor to both Jancis Robinson Oxford Companion to Wine and Hugh Johnson World Atlas of Wine 5th Edition (photography only)

Previous consultancies in Italy – Trentino Vino; Gruppo Coltiva, Emilia Romagna; Ambrosetti Group, Milan; Istituto Vite e Vino, Sicily; Enoteca Regionale Emilia-Romagna, Girelli and Valtellina

WINE JUDGING at the following International Competitions and Fairs –
Annually at WINE International Challenge as Chairman, Arbitrator or Senior Judge
Tastevinage, Ch de Vougeot, Burgundy
Marco Polo Vini d’Autore Awards, Venice
Concorso Internazionale, VinItaly, Verona
Catad’Or, Chile, Uruguay and Argentina
International Wine Fair, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Gewurztraminer Festival, Tramin
International Wine and Spirit Competition, England
Concours Mondial, Brussels and Bruges
VieVinum, Vienna
Vinifera Conference, Seattle

High resolution electronic format photos for all wine magazines, promotional work, exhibition displays, books, price lists and own articles.

Previous Committee Member and Honorary Secretary, The Circle of Wine Writers
Previous Committee Member FIDJV (Féderation International des Journalistes de Vin)
Elected Associate Member of Euro-Toques
Past President, Southwestern Guild of Sommelliers

National retailer and restaurant wine list competitions for Italian Trade Commission, Wines from Spain and Wines of Germany
Organiser and Chairman of Wine and Food Seminars at The Restaurant Show, Olympia and Harrogate
Wine presentations and seminars at London International Wine Trade Fair

For two and a half years, weekly wine program on Brunel Radio, also radio appearances with BBC West. Lecturer on many wine countries and regions, but specialist presenter for Italy with wine societies, clubs and other social groups, averaging 25 a year.