Ancient Glass Blog of The Allaire Collection

What happened to the Cinzano Glass collection ?

Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on October 30, 2016

What happened to the Cinzano  Glass collection ?

Article by David Giles

 In 1971 Count Alberto Marone Cinzano, of the family that created the famous Cinzano Vermouth, decided to start collecting fine examples of ancient and antique glass. The collection was published first in 1974 and again in 1978 under the title The Cinzano Glass Collection, edited by Peter Lazarus.

In recent times the collection appeared to have gone from public view and I enquired of many glass people what had happened to it. It was suggested that it had been sold and dispersed and in fact in one recent London glass auction catalogue it suggested that a glass had come from that collection. After much searching I was delighted to discover that the collection was still completely intact and with additional glasses added after the 1974/78 publications. What however had happened was that the Marone family sold the Vermouth business in 1992 to an international drinks company which was absorbed in 1997  into the large British company Diageo and the collection of glass was included.  So now the collection is known as the Diageo Glass Collection. Diageo actually sold the Cinzano Vermouth label to Campari in 1999 but kept the glass collection. It was published again in 2005 and edited by Rosa Barovier Mentasti under the title Glass Collection Della Diageo a Santa Vittoria d’Alba. The catalogue is now out of print but can still be obtained on second hand books sites.

When the collection was published in 1974/78 there were 125 pieces in the collection but after that the Marone family added more pieces and in the 2015 publication there are 144 pieces featured. The oldest piece in the collection is a wonderful 5th century BC Obsidian lobed bowl.  There are twenty ancient vessels of Roman and Frankish origin and two Islamic glasses. Twenty Venetian glasses. Lots of glasses from Holland and Germany and also from England. Each one is illustrated with colour plate and full description in Italian and English.

The collection is now kept at Diageo meeting centre in Villa Storica a Santa Vittoria d’Alba Italy which is between Turin and Genoa, It can be visited by prior arrangement if you Email

Readers might also like to look at

Enter the site and click on Le Cantine and they will see how cleverly the glass is displayed in cut-out old wine barrels. This collection might be an idea for a future visit of the Glass Circle.

Attached are photos of 8 examples from the collection.  This article will be in the next Glass Circle News letter.

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