Masciarelli Villa Gemma Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Riserva 2015


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“The 2015 Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Riserva opens slowly in the glass, as citrus-tinged blackberries give way to exotic spices, hints of cocoa and camphor. This is velvety in texture with a rich and dense display of ripe dark fruits and licorice. Its web of grippy tannins are hardly noticeable, until it’s too late, as the cheeks pucker under the 2015’s youthful structure. Even though it is monolithic today, there are depths still unseen here that will require further cellaring to come forward. Drinking window: 2023-2028. 90 points

The late Gianni Masciarelli founded the winery in 1981, starting out with just two hectares. Today, Masciarelli is one of the largest producers in the region, maintaining an admirable level of quality and dependability throughout the entire range. While the headquarters are located in San Martino sulla Marrucina, Masciarelli oversees 365 hectares through sustainable practices, spread out between sixty different sites. Masciarelli is the only Abruzzo producer to source all-estate fruit from all four provinces (Chieti, Pescara, Teramo and l’Aquila). With the size and focus on choice terroir, over the decades the firm created a large yet diverse portfolio of Montepulciano and Trebbiano that spans from the pure and fresh to the most modern, concentrated and internationally-styled. As a guide to finding the wines that best fit your palate, the portfolio is broken down between the “classic” and fresher “Masciarelli” lineup, the more international and stylish “Masciarelli – Marina Cvetic” lineup (named after Gianni Masciarelli’s wife) and the more powerful and age-worthy “Masciarelli – Villa Gemma” lineup. Just be aware that there is no shortage of new French oak in the more “important” wines of the range. That said, it’s really a matter of taste.”

Eric Guido, Vinous (04/21)