WINE REVIEW: Masciarelli Villa Gemma, 2015 Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Riserva DOC, Italy ($57)
Masciarelli, Villa Gemma 2020 Colline Teatine IGT Bianco, Italy ($13)
by Andrew Chalk
In the coastal eastern Italian region of Abruzzo the acclaimed Masciarelli estate was founded in 1981 by Gianni Masciarelli. His focus was on vineyard sites and management. Leadership since his premature passing in 2008, at the young age of 53, has been in the hands of his widow Marina Cvetic and daughter Miriam Masciairelli. Gianni was revered in the Italian wine world and credited as the primary motive force behind the creation of Montepulciano d’Abruzzo as a world class wine.
This riserva could not be a better example to start with in order to discover this singular wine for oneself. It is complex, with bright red fruit bathed in nuances of forest floor aromas. All framed in a sturdy tannic jacket that dictates its comportment. Keep it for 5 years or enjoy it now. It will be stellar with game as it is enjoyed in Italy.
The Bianco is a 70% trebbiano and a later introduction to the estate’s wines (Gianni released the first example in 1985). It is dry, crisp, metallic, and, yes, minerally. Best with food, either pasta with white sauce, or poultry, or seafood. This wine has its followers.
Generally, behold the reasonable prices above which are representative of the good value in Abruzzo.