About Us

Alan Manley - Principal

Here’s my story and I’m sticking to it: I started tasting wine from my dad’s glass at the age of four (itty bitty sips!). I am a first-generation American raised in New York by Swiss parents who drank wine every day. I started getting serious about wine as a hobby at around age 22 with blind tastings, collecting, keeping notes, reading, research and travel.

In 1997 I opened Primitivo Wine Bar in Colorado. In its five-and-a-half-year run it earned numerous awards including the AAA "Four Diamond Award," the Wine Spectator’s "Best of Award of Excellence" and the "DiRoNA Award" (Distinguished Restaurants of North America). I had 2,200 selections on the wine list and greatly advanced my understanding about wine and the wine business.

A guest who frequented Primitivo asked if I knew where he could get a custom cellar designed, built and installed. I said “well, me for instance.” (I’d been a serious hobby woodworker for 15 years by then.) When I finished the installation he asked if I could help him fill it, and in 2003 VintageSpec was born.

My primary love and expertise is Barolo (Piedmont, Italy). I travel and conduct research extensively in Northern Italy. I adore Champagne and Alsatian Rieslings as well, and am fascinated by the wines coming out of the Priorato in Spain. Other favorites include Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Rioja and Ribera del Duero, Valtellina and Valpolicella, the aromatic whites of Alto Adige, German Riesling, Austrian Grüner Veltliner, and wines from the Jura and Loire.