We begin our first issue of 2012 with sad news. Tuesday, January 2 saw the death of Giulio Gambelli, one of the enologists most representative of our wine and of all Black Rooster territory as a whole.
We would like to remember his passion for Sangiovese, the enormous importance of the contribution he made to our territory, and his flair for living and working in general, through the words of our members, the ones fortunate enough to have worked with him or simply to have known him.
We are terribly sad, since as well as being a friend he was an extraordinary person, in both his abilities and his humanity. I am certain that many people will miss him.
A salute to the great “Bicchierino”, a man as loyal as his palate was fine, an example of honesty, great professionalism and wisdom to be followed.
I never thought of Giulio Gambelli as a “technician” as is now the character, almost of an alchemist, given the enologist, but as a great artisan, an artist.
On the other hand, he himself desired no titles and his discretion and reserve referred to a creative environment made up of intimacy and awareness.
The decisive element of his art didn’t lie in “making” wine but in revealing it, to the point that every winery was first of all respected and valorized in relation to grape variety and its territory.
Especially Chianti Classico, where Sangiovese reached with him its perfect expressive identity, even before changes were made to production regulations.
Indeed, together with unforgettable Sergio Manetti, with his extraordinary farsightedness, he was one of the first to show the right road to regional and national wine production.
We owe him infinite recognition.
Fattoria di Felsina
For me, too, as for many other enologists of my generation, Giulo Gambelli was one of the first keys of entry to the wine world. We all know about his undisputed enological skills but what immediately struck me, and remained in my mind was the man, Giulio, the person.
Kind, honest, reliable but above all inquisitive, curious about understanding and learning how wine itself was changing. Able still to be amazed after 50 years’ experience, willing to listen with interest to anyone in order to make comparisons, with absolutely no presumption.
In Chianti Classico there are and have been great enologists but very rarely people like Giulio Gabelli. And that is why Giulio Gambelli will be missed.
Castello di Ama
I remember Giulio’s embrace, with no trace of the effusions of this new way of greeting someone. He preferred a handshake with a shy smile, his head bent to the side of his good ear. But that time in the consortium’s parking area Giulio was really upset. While he was fiddling with the hood of his R4 it had closed, with his car keys inside.
By a lucky break I was able to unjam it, partially repaying the great deal of advice he had given me. This is just one recollection of the many experiences I had with him here at Poggiarello.
Gian Paolo Brini