Calmont Beverage Company was founded and started in 1941 by Silvio and Nevio Semprebon along with Gino Berini. To slack the thirst of Vermont’s unique community of Italian granite quarry workers, the brothers brought barreled California wine to Vermont, via rail, and bottled it here under the Calmont brand name (a contraction of California / Vermont). With the birth and growth of the ski industry after the World War II, Calmont shifted to distribution of fine wines from Europe, New York and California.
The 1980’s were a time of great opportunity and expansion at Calmont as we transitioned from a small regional Vermont distributor to one that serviced the whole state. This expansion was fueled by market demand for the new “boutique” wineries of California and a greater interest in fine wine in general. In the early 80s we started representing small artisan California wine producers such as Mount Eden, Kistler, Calera, Ravenswood, Sonoma-Cutrer, Clos du Val, Matanzas Creek and Markham where a young winemaker named Bob Foley was cutting this teeth.
In 1998 we merged Warner Distributing into our company and Christine Warner stayed on with us for the next two years to help further develop her. She then moved on to work for Rudi and was our rep from that firm for several more years. She is personally responsible for making Riesling lovers out of many of our customers and us.
Forward to 2004, working with suppliers like Vias, Dalla Terra and others, and then broad-based direct importing led Calmont Beverage to become a market leader capitalizing on a tremendous string of high-quality wines beginning with the 2001 vintage of Baroli, Barbareschi & Brunelli which launched our modern day direct-import endeavors selling these great wines by the pallet-load.
Now in our 70th year of business Calmont Beverage is run by Silvio Semprebon’s grandchildren. We stock over 2,000 selections of wine and represent more than 200 brands of beer. While we are perhaps best known for our broad selection of limited production artisan wines sold primarily to the restaurant, hotel and specialty food and wine shop trade, we also proudly represent a full range of carefully selected, larger production brands targeted to Vermont’s chain grocery and convenience stores for which we have a dedicated merchandizing and sales support staff. Our goal is to provide each of our customers with outstanding, knowledgeable service and a great selection of fine wines and beers.
We are proud of our supplier partners. Like us, most are small family owned firms. We know they appreciate our prompt payment policy and the representation they get here in Vermont. By the way, we still represent Louis Latour and hope to do so for another 65 years.