Aglianico from Campania's Taurasi DOC has it all: amazing soils (mixed limestone and volcanic terroir); good altitude and length of ripening cycle; a noble, autochthonous grape; and a tradition of making spectacular, ageworthy wines. It's even perfect year-round, whether you're eating braises in the winter or grilling in the summer.
So why do we see so few remarkable examples, and almost exclusively from one producer (Mastroberardino)? We're not completely sure, but we do know that Taurus now has a second great estate: Luigi Tecce.
Luigi is the fourth generation of his family to work the property (which also has an uncommonly long history of estate-bottling, going back to that first generation nearly a century ago). He wasn't expecting this, having made his career already in political circles in Rome. But when his father passed away, and his grandfather not long thereafter, Luigi changed his life to continue that of the estate. Self-taught in a way that is uncommon for family concerns, listening to his own inner compass, Tecce is a rare bird in this already rarefied world of wine.
He works by himself in both the vines and the cellar, farming a total of just 5 hectares using organic methods, and harvesting by hand. He only uses Aglianico, though regulations permit other varieties. Fermentation is unhurried and with indigenous yeasts; aging in barrel and bottle is also extensive. There is no filtration of the wines, and minimal sulfur is used. These are very pure, alive expressions of the grape, their place, and their maker.