The World Affairs Council of Orange County & Dana Point Sister City Association present:

A Premium Event!

Tour of Italy Wine Tasting at the Mission San Juan Capistrano!

Indulge in a magical evening at the historic Mission San Juan Capistrano, featuring a tasting of high-end wines that Dr. Daniele C. Struppa has carefully curated and will discuss. Dr. Struppa is an Italian mathematician, professor, WACOC Trustee, and the 13th President of Chapman University in Orange County. Prior to assuming the Office of the President, Struppa was Chancellor at Chapman University for nine years.

Elevate your senses with carefully crafted and themed hors d’oeuvres, and a rare live performance by a gifted opera singer, and mingle with a distinguished delegation from Sorrento, Italy, a Sister City to Dana Point, California.

Experience the opportunity to acquire mystery vintage wine bottles and exclusive trips to Italy, while interacting with internationally-focused and well-traveled members of the Southern California community!

Date & Time:

Thursday, February 29, 2024

6:00 – 8:00 PM


Mission San Juan Capistrano

Soldier’s Barracks

26801 Old Mission Road

San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675


Members of the World Affairs Council of Orange County & Dana Point Sister Cities: $150

Non-members: $170

*All profits from tickets sales go towards funding our youth education initiatives, including Academic WorldQuest!


Public parking is available in the surrounding streets near the Mission. The most visible parking lot is on the south side of Old Mission Road and El Camino Real. A public parking garage (26701 Verdugo Street Garage) is also nearby.


Cocktail and Business Casual Attire

*Please wear close-toed shoes

Indulge in a tasting of four carefully curated wines!

CASANOVA DI NERI 2017 BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINOWINE ADVOCATE 94+ POINTS – “The Casanova di Neri 2017 Brunello di Montalcino delivers unexpected grace and a floral profile that is not common to find in this scorching-hot and dry vintage. In faithful Casanova di Neri fashion, the wine is bold and dark in appearance, and although the bouquet is dominated by purple and black fruits, there is a brief interlude of fresh garden rose or lilac. That little moment changes up the momentum of this wine in a most positive way by allowing for a harmony of low tones and high tones that are well matched here. The wine is robust, structured and velvety to the palate, but ultimately this expression is far more delicate than I would have ever expected for a 2017 Brunello. This is a nice surprise.”

JAMES SUCKLING 94 POINTS – “A modern interpretation of Amarone on one hand, yet dense, fresh and altitudinal of feel, brimming with the marrow of alpine herb and spruce sap, on the other. Bitter cocoa, espresso grind and the usual swathe of pithy, dried grape skin tannins, menthol and black licorice strap. Immense, powerful and fresh. I suppose that one can ask just how much of this can be drunk. On the other hand, a glass is impressive in the right moment. ”
Winemaker Notes – Well-structured wine, with a soft, long and persistent finish. Brilliant ruby red in color, with a pleasant scent of wild berries. Dry and velvety on the palate, it is characterized by a bitter almond finish. Pairs perfectly with roasted meats, particularly guinea fowl, pork, goat and lamb. Delicious with mushroom-based dishes and medium-aged cheeses.

A full-bodied and structured white wine , with intense scents of peach, melon and dried fruit, intense and persistent. Partly fermented in new oak, and aged in steel tanks and barriques.

“The Greco di Tufo grape is characterized by a content of coloring matter higher than the other white grapes of the Campania region. For this reason, at full maturation, this grape becomes golden with amber tones on the sun-exposed side. The must is reddish ochre. The wine, if not clarified, has an intense golden colour. Giallo d’Arles is an extreme and rigorous interpretation of the Greco di Tufo wine. It is a cru produced with one vineyard of Greco grapes. The ancient yellow-golden colour, typical of the denomination, is more intense also thanks to the partial fermentation in new oak barrels and thanks to the complete absence of any clarification treatments. It is a white wine with the structure of a red wine, powerful and refined, characterized by a deep minerality blended with flavours of apricot and quince marmelade and by a full and fresh taste. Giallo d’Arles has also an extraordinary predisposition to maturation in bottle, obtaining year-by-year elegance, complexity and harmony. The name given to the wine is a tribute to Van Gogh’s favourite colour during his stay in Arles.” – WINERY NOTES


From the ash soils of Mount Etna’s north slope comes this 100% Carricante (one of Italy’s noblest white grapes) with its floral and spicy nose, and intense, apple and pear-fruited and lightly vanilla-tinged flavors, and a mouthfeel that’s soft with mineral sensations. The wine is fermented in in French oak.

VINOUS 93 POINTS – “The 2022 Etna Bianco Le Vigne Niche Santo Spirito lifts from the glass with a savory blend of crushed green apples, wet stones and touches of chamomile. This is silky and soothing, with depths of ripe apricot and nectarine complicated by sweet herbal tones and hints of candied lime, all lifted by a core of brisk acidity. It finishes long and lightly structured, leaving a mineral tinge and Asian pear traces slowly fading. Typically, I find the Santo Spirito to be the more forward and accessible Bianco from the Terre Nere portfolio, but in 2022, it’s holding its power in reserve. Cellaring is recommended.”

DECANTER 93 POINTS – “From vines in Castiglione di Sicilia at 700-800m, Santo Spirito Bianco is more floral and lighter compared to the tropical fruit of Calderara Sottana, with a distinct breeziness of citrus, seashell and salt. Concentrated and intense, with a juicy, saline attack, it’s packed with citrus peel, white peach and florals, yet remains light on its feet, stony and vertical. Soft and long.”

Speaker Bio:

Dr. Daniele C. Struppa

Daniele C. Struppa, Ph.D., is the 13th President of Chapman University in Orange, California. Before assuming this title in 2016, he had served as Chapman University’s Chancellor (Chief Academic Officer) for ten years, and as Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at George Mason University for nine years.

Dr. Struppa is a mathematician, whose expertise is in the field of Fourier Analysis; Dr. Struppa is the author of ten volumes, more than 200 peer reviewed publications, and holds several patents in the field of signal processing. Dr. Struppa has received numerous awards, including the 2016 Cozzarelli Prize from the National Academy of Sciences, the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, and is a member of the National Academy of Inventors.

Dr. Struppa was born in Milano, Italy, in 1955, and came to the United States in 1978, to pursue his Ph.D. at the University of Maryland; after a few years in Italy, he came back to the United States as a professor of mathematics at George Mason University in 1988.

Dr. Struppa is married to Mary Elizabeth (Lisa) Sparks, who is the Founding Dean of the School of Communication at Chapman University, and is the father of four children, Alessandro, Elena, Arianna, and Athena.

About Dana Point Sister City Association: 

The Dana Point Sister City Association is a non-profit, volunteer organization which endeavors to promote international communication, understanding, education and friendship between the people of Dana Point and the people of foreign cities. We are a member of Sister Cities International, a worldwide organization. These principles are accomplished through the following activities:

  • Cultural Exchanges
  • Business Exchanges
  • Student & Teacher Exchanges
  • Student Scholarships
  • Host Families
  • Fund Raising

As a member, you will be able to learn about new cultures, customs and lifestyles; meet interesting people with mutual interests; travel to our sister cities with other members; participate in association fund-raising events; attend parties and dinners to commemorate foreign holidays; assist in event-planning by volunteering on committees; and share our goals for international unity.

About World Affairs Council of Orange County:

The World Affairs Council of Orange County (WACOC) is a non-partisan, non-profit, 501(c)(3) that promotes knowledge of world affairs–and their impact on our community, our country, and the world. With a vibrant and diverse membership and wide-ranging programs, the WACOC is Orange County’s leading, and most trusted forum for all who seek to better understand the world and our role in its future. 

Our mission is to promote awareness and engagement on critical global issues, opportunities, and challenges affecting our community and the world. We bring you face-to-face with global experts who help you understand and navigate your world more successfully.