Winery to Watch 2013

Italy: Mastrodomenico

Farming aglianico at 1,150 feet, Mastrodomenico is putting out reds that redefine what it is to be a Southern Italian red. The Mastrodomenico family has been farming grapes in Barile, a small town on the eastern side of Mount Vulture in Basilicata, for five generations. In 2004, Donato Mastrodomenico and his son, Giuseppe, decided to try making and bottling wines from the 20 acres they farm at elevations of 1,150 feet. They pulled their 2009 Aglianico del Vulture Likos off 40-year-old vines and fermented it without added yeast. It’s one of the most refined aglianicos we’ve tasted, a brisk red with transparency to its fruit flavors in tandem with a firm, brawny minerality. It’s a game-changer in a region more associated with thick, rustic reds.