An English egg man in Tuscany

Tuscan winemaker Robin Baum with concrete eggs

Robin Baum, a retired lawyer looking even more like the classic Englishman against the backdrop of Tuscany, his current stomping ground, has such a penchant for eggs that here they call him uomo dell’uovo, or ‘egg man’. In Baum’s case they come in concrete, ceramic and porcelain – vessels in striking shapes and forms in which he ages wines.

For the last 10 years or so, eye-catching concrete eggs and terracotta amphorae have been very much in vogue in Italy because they are ‘anything-other-than-oak'. This trend has also led to a re-appreciation of concrete tanks, once considered old-fashioned, which can offer...