Have wine glass, will travel: Chamber to promote Tuscan tour

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Ever wanted to explore wine country on another continent?

The Walla Walla Valley Chamber of Commerce has partnered with World Wide Travel and Collette Experiences to offer a trip to Tuscany later this year.

The 10-day trip will take place in November and include six nights in Tuscany, the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance, plus a visit to Academy Gallery and Michelangelo's statue of David, wine tasting in the heart of the Chianti region and a guided tour of Assisi, among many other highlights.

Details of the journey will be explored April 16 with an event at Sapolil Cellars.

"Under the Tuscan Sun" will be shown on the big screen at the Main Street tasting room. The evening will include more explanation about the trip and special pricing.

Those interested in booking the trip are highly encouraged to attend the event, where further special offerings may be made, Chamber officials said.

Per-person rates are $3,499 for singles, $3,199 for doubles and $3,169 for triples. That price includes 13 meals -- eight breakfasts and five dinners.

Chamber Chief Executive Officer David Woolson said the trip is another opportunity for the organization to provide value to the community.

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Two businesses have expanded the shopping and dining choices in Weston, according to an announcement from Weston Chamber of Commerce President Tim Crampton.

Ivy's Attic, a shop that features everything from antiques to home decor and homemade items, opened last spring with a focus on something for everyone. The business is located in the back of the Parc building on North Water and Main streets.

The second business marks a return to Weston. Central Station re-opened last September under new management. The eatery, 100 E. Main St., features daily specials, as well as a regular menu with breakfast, lunch and dinner, ice cream and homemade pies. It's open six days a week: 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday through Friday; and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

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Charles Smith Wines continues to build its team of wine professionals with a new sales director.

Michael Zuppa has joined the company and will be responsible for East Coast and national accounts, representing the family of brands that includes K Vintners, Charles Smith Wines, Secco Italian Bubbles and Charles amp; Charles, Smith announced Tuesday.

Zuppa has served 10 years with Constellation Wines U.S., where he most recently was director of national accounts, managing a team of five strategic account managers and over 125 on-premise national accounts.

"We're collecting the finest people to join our team at Charles Smith Wines," Smith said in the announcement. "With the addition of Madeline Dow from the Washington State Wine Commission in January and now Mike Zuppa, who comes with a great reputation and a strong national network, we're going to do what we've done before but much, much more...you can count on it."

Zuppa started his career in the restaurant business, where he honed his strength in managing beverage programs. He has extensive experience with Gallo and Constellation in Maryland, Washington D.C., Virginia and Texas. He's now based in his home state of New Jersey.

Strictly Business is a local business column. Vicki Hillhouse can be reached at vickihillhouse@wwub.com or 526-8321.

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