January Featured Winemakers

Throughout January, Luci Ancora & Ristorante Luci will feature two special winemakers

Celestino Gaspari & Elena Fucci


Enjoy “Zyme” Rondinella Blend & “Titolo” Aglianico del Vulture throughout January at Luci Restaurants.

Now, onto the wines…


Zyme Logo

Celestino Gaspari “Zyme” il Bianco “From Black to White” Rondinella Blend 2011


Celestino Gaspari is an emerging Italian wine maker. We first encountered his portfolio last fall at an industry tasting. His wines were some of the most unique and memorable we tasted that day. One white in particular caught our attention. “Zyme,” a fruit forward blend made with familiar and some unheard of varietals. At first taste, it beautifully expressed a union of traditional methods and modern appeal. With notes of peach and juicy pear, slight tones of mint, smoke, and dried flowers, this unique blend of aromas and tastes stood out from the afternoon’s offerings. Comprised of 60% Rondinella Bianca, 15% Traminer, 15% Kerner, and 10% Incorcio Manzoni, these obscure varietals stopped us at the table. It’s not everyday that unique blends composed of obscure varietals come along with this level of quality and precision. We found one of the reasons for this: Gaspari’s wife, Maria Rosa Quintarelli, is the daughter of famous Valpolicella producer, Giuseppe Quintarelli and it is at this estate that Gaspari spent 11 years learning the artistry of Vapolicella production.

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 As with food, good wine also begins with the best ingredients – in this case, the best juice. It comes as little surprise that Gaspari studied agronomy from a very young age. Using this knowledge, has has gained notable experience through the birth and growth of ten area wineries. It is through the wines from Zyme, that one can experience the history of Gaspari’s viniviticulture expertise and dedication to not only producing beautiful wines, but also quality grapes. “Zýmē is home to young men and women who are forward-looking, pro-active, and committed, and who grow professionally in synergy with the grapevines they tend.” Perfect as an aperitif, with fish or earthy risotto dishes. Available through January at Luci Restaurants for $9/glass.



Elena Fucci “Titolo” Aglianico del Vulture 2010


On the outskirts of Barile, in the North of Basilicata, immersed between vineyard and olive groves, it is here that the Fucci Family produces the historic Aglianico. This black grape varietal with a long history beginning in Greece and stretching into the Roman empire, has character reminiscent of Barolo. Often called the “Barolo of the South,” Elena Fucci’s work with these grapes offers hints of tobacco, spice, and vanilla alongside ethereal spices of cherry, blackberry preserves, and rosemary. Once a key component to Falernian wine of the Roman Empire, today, Aglianico remains present in the vineyards of the South. Working with passion to improve the characteristics of this unmistakable and unique wine, Elena’s education and experience offers a glimpse into the past while offering place and future for Aglianico.


Dark and intense ruby red with an ample and complex nose, Titolo is dry on the palate and full bodied with firm tannins and a long finish. Although a young wine when released, it is destined for a great future! $12/glass $58/btl


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