Gianni Masciarelli dies

Gianni Masciarelli dies News Wine News
  • Monday 4 August 2008

The world of Italian wine is mourning the loss of Abruzzese pioneer winemaker Gianni Masciarelli, who has died of a heart attack aged 53.

Gianni Masciarelli

The winemaker died on 31 July while on a business trip in Munich.

‘To all those who knew him Gianni was an inspiration, a force of nature, and of course an excellent winemaker and a good friend,’ said Francesco Ricasoli, CEO of Barone Ricasoli. ‘It’s a tragedy.’

Masciarelli was born in San Martino della Marrucina, near Chieti in Abruzzo.

He began making wine at his father’s winery in 1978 and has long been credited as a visionary, masterminding the revival of winemaking in Abruzzo, and the refashioning of Montepulciano d’Abruzzo as a grape that could produce world-class wines.

In 1984 he launched his Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Villa Gemma, a new benchmark in quality for the appellation.

In 1991 he released the first vintage of Trebbiano d’Abruzzo Marina Cvetic, named after his wife, a wine that set a new standard for ‘modern’ expressions of the grape variety.

Today the Masciarelli estate comprises 140ha and produces some 1,100,000 bottles of wine a year.

‘He was an exceptional man,’ said Lamberto Frescobladi, CEO of Marchesi de’ Frescobaldi. ‘If the vintage this year is a five-star one, I am going to dedicate it to Gianni Masciarelli.’

He is survived by his wife Marina and his three young children, Miriam, Chiara and Riccardo.

Latest coverage

The latest information from the world famous DWWA competition

Related Topics