I had the pleasure of sampling some wines from Umbria, another Italian region I am eager to visit! While I can’t be there just yet, it’s wonderful to explore the area through the glass. Madrevite, situated near the border between Umbria and Tuscany, is nestled within the hills that cradle the Umbrian Lake Trasimeno and the Tuscan Lake Chiusi, specifically within the “Colli del Trasimeno” DOC zone. This region exudes great charm, boasting scenic views and lush nature, all near the captivating historic town of Cortona.

The conformation of the land creates a unique microclimate that guarantees optimal conditions for viticulture. The winters are mild, the summers are warm and breezy, and the temperature variations between day and night ensure freshness and longevity for the wines. The clayey soils impart richness and length.

Madrevite was founded in 2003 when Nicola Chiucchiurlotto began restoring his family farm and decided to replant part of his grandfather Zino’s old vineyards, dating back to 1978. With 11 hectares of vineyards and an annual production of 35,000 bottles, Nicola now focuses on red varieties like Gamay del Trasimeno, Sangiovese, Montepulciano, and Syrah, as well as white ones like Trebbiano Spoletino and Grechetto.

Our tasting with Nicola began with the Elvé, a remarkable wine that’s sharp and energetic! It mirrors his personality—vivid and passionate from the first sip. Made from the Grechetto grape variety, which once had a reputation of being “eh, not the best,” it is now making a comeback, and I genuinely love this grape varietal. The wine exhibits a nice balance, crucial in producing with this grape varietal, as Nicola explains, since it can sometimes fluctuate or fall flat. This wine has Mediterranean vibes, some spice like cardamom and herbs, with beautiful fruit and acidity.

The labels on these wines are charming and funny, which is not common for Italian wines. However, I love that they’re embracing the fun side of wine on their labels, making the wines even more enjoyable! Their goal is to bring you a story with the labels of “Umbria”—offerings, stories, and inspiration. The second wine we enjoyed was the Il Reminore, made with a classic grape. It’s a very beautiful, flinty, aromatic wine with a stunningly attractive Mediterranean nose and palate, offering great complexity. You’ll find nice spice, oranges, flowers, banana, and tropical notes in this wine—truly layered and beautiful!

After the second white, we tasted an amazing rosé called La Bisbetica, inspired by a Shakespeare masterpiece. This wine, made with Gamay del Trasimeno grapes, has beautiful strawberry notes and embodies quantity, exclusivity, and inspiration. It’s absolutely delicious and one of my favorite wines of the tasting. The acidity is striking, enhancing the beautiful red fruit notes, flowers, and minerality. This special rosé also offers savory notes and a long finish due to the terroir from the lake, the soils, and the weather combined. The wind here is crucial for the grapes, and Nicola stressed the importance of this terroir combination, contributing to the amazing success of his wines.

Moving on to reds, we started with the Opra, also made from Gamay del Trasimeno grapes. The name Opra essentially translates to “do what you love and enjoy it” work-wise. It’s a very easy-to-drink wine with delicate tannins and balanced flavors. Charismatic with nice strawberry and spice notes, it has hints of Mediterranean flavor layering throughout. Once in the mouth, it’s alluring and powerful, a fun surprise with lots of energy and excitement. If you were to compare this red to anything else, you could liken it to a Burgundian Pinot Noir, as Nicola expresses. The fermentation is short to maintain the freshness and balance of acidity in this wine. It’s delicious and fine drinking—a wine you will absolutely love!

The last red we enjoyed was the Cosa, which means “who is daring.” The label was inspired by Nicola’s passion to produce a wine for the people. This label, done by a NY artist, represents a more carbonic style, ideal for various cuisine styles. Made using concrete tanks, it results in an elegant and savory wine with a lot of fruit and power. It’s a fruit bomb in a good way, ideal for pre-dinner enjoyment while making carnitas or some spice-inspired red meat dish. This wine pairs well with cheeses and vegetables, and because of its fruitiness, it can complement a variety of flavors. Cosa grapes are picked later than Opra, and stylistically, they’re very different yet similar at the same time. Cosa is made from older grapes, whereas Opra is made from slightly younger grapes.

If you’re seeking some of the best wines in Umbria with amazing character, fruit, and finesse, look no further than Madrevite! I was wildly impressed with these wines and hope I can visit this amazing region one day and the winery (2024 goals). Always remember, eat what you like and drink what you love, please pair responsibly!