Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The Masciarelli Wine Company

I had the pleasure of receiving an invitation and meeting the President and CEO of Masciarelli Wine Company, Roberta Masciarelli-Spagnuolo, and her husband, Joseph, at their grand portfolio tasting at the Boston Harbor Hotel last month. It was a wonderful presentation of all their wines, but of course I was there to explore their Italian portfolio and to experience what the many wineries of Italy had to offer. They had some great obscure grapes from Puglia, Sardegna and Sicily that I featured on my blog, Vino Travels, along with some of the most highly respected wines in Italy including Barolo, Barbaresco, Brunello, Chianti Classico, etc.

Masciarelli Wine Company
Right to left: Joseph Spagnuolo, Roberta Masciarelli-Spagnuolo and Annamaria Masciarelli
The Masciarelli Wine Company is a well-known importer in not only Massachusetts and the Boston area, but the rest of the country as well as the Masciarelli brand being known throughout the world. The Masciarelli Wine Company distributes to 27 states and 31 wholesalers throughout the United States. The company was founded back in 1987 by Nicola Masciarelli. Nicola at the time was connecting the roots of their family vineyards in Italy to the wine importing business in the United States. Today, the Masciarelli Wine Company has a large presence of Italian wines in their portfolio covering seventeen of the twenty regions within Italy. Besides Italian wine, they have a strong presence of French wine as well making them amongst the top wholesalers of Bordeaux futures in MA. In addition to their Italian and French portfolio they also import wines from Spain, Luxemborg, Portugal, Australia, New Zealand, Chile, South Africa, Uruguay and Argentina. In total the Masciarelli Wine Company carries over 1000 different labels in their portfolio.

Roberta and the Masciarelli family have been able to expand the company and carry on the legacy of what Nicola Masciarelli, Roberta's father, started years ago. Their philosophy at Masciarelli is to “deal directly with the winery whenever possible and seek out small estates producing high-quality wines that would be overlooked in larger brand-driven portfolios”. 

Castello di Semivicoli
Castello di Semivicoli
Masciarelli is also a well recognized name in the Abruzzo region of central Italy where the family wineries are located. A variety of grapes are produced there, but the prominent grapes of this region are montepulciano d'abruzzo and trebbiano d'abruzzo. The Masciarelli winery was established in 1978 by Gianni Masciarelli due to the influence and love of winemaking from his grandfather Giovanni Masciarelli. Gianni began producing wines in 1981. There are four brands that fall under the Masciarelli brand of wines to include Marina Cvetic, Masicarelli Classico, Iskra and Villa Gemma. Today their annual production equals over 2 million bottles. They are located in 4 provinces within the Abruzzo region including their main site in Chieti (San Martino sulla Marrucina), Teramo, Pescara and L'Aquila. 

Marina Cvetic Masciarelli
Marina Cvetic Masciarelli and family
I'll leave with you with Gianni Masciarelli's quote from his thoughts on the Abruzzo region and his love of wine. It's a wonderful remembrance of his passion and what makes their wines special. “However much I love Abruzzo as a whole, this is the place I would like to live if I were vines. A place rich in historical memories and tradition. This is where our vineyards have always stood and the fruits we receive are the authentic expression of this culture. I think everyone has wondered at least once Why ever did I do this? I find the answer in the love I have for the land and in the satisfaction my work gives me.”

Gianni Masciarelli
Gianni Masciarelli

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