Coveted by international collectors and fine wine connoisseurs across the globe, Masseto constantly receives the highest accolades from the most prestigious wine critics in the world. It is the benchmark of a true fine wine, consistently demonstrating elegance, balance, and superb aging potential.
Masseto’s history dates back to the early 1980s, when acclaimed Russian-American oenologist André Thcelicheff the estate’s first consultant, suggested that the terroir of the Masseto hill, with its unique gray and blue clay, would be particularly well suited to planting Merlot. The name Masseto, in fact, comes from the presence of the masses of clay on the hill, which are as hard as rock: “masso” in Italian means “rock” or “boulder.”
The vineyard was planted on the Masseto hill because it had all of the characteristics necessary for giving life to an exceptional wine, and all who become a part of the estate team, which has evolved over the years, have dedicated themselves to the pursuit excellence. The Masseto vineyard workers quite literally live with the vines, which they care for virtually all year round. They have a profound knowledge of the differences between the many plots which compose the mosaic of the Masseto vineyard, and as harvest time approaches, the team tastes the grapes repeatedly in order to follow their evolution and arrive at a tailor-made decision as to the best moment to start picking in any given plot. As Estate Director and Winemaker Axel Heinz says, “The rule is quite simply: The palate always has the last word!”
Masseto is also an important ambassador of the Bolgheri region near the Tuscan coast, where the winery is located: it is thanks to wines like Masseto that the Bolgheri is gaining international acclaim as one of the world’s great wine-growing regions.
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17 uniquely gifted acres that transmit a wine that is internationally proclaimed one of the world’s finest. Coveted by international collectors and fine wine connoisseurs across the globe, Masseto constantly receives the highest accolades from the most prestigious wine critics in the world, and is a fixture in the international fine wine trade indices.
Masseto Winemaker and Estate Director Axel Heinz Born in Munich, Germany, on 19 November 1971. In 1993, after completing high school, he moved to France, in the Bordeaux region, where he obtained a diploma in Agriculture, "Viticulture Oenologie," from the Lycée d'Enseignement Général et Technologique Agricole de Bordeaux (LEGTA), and got his first experience in vinification at Château La Tour Carnet, in Saint Laurent du Medoc. In 1999, still in Bordeaux, he obtained a Masters in Agronomy from the Ecole Nationale d'Ingénieurs des Travaux Agricoles and the Enological School of Bordeaux, finishing with a thesis dedicated to the premature aging of the Chardonnay-based whites of Limoux. He then transferred to Macau en Médoc, where in 2000 he acted as consultant, representing the wines of many prestigious Bordeaux estates, for Bovitis SARL. The following year in Saint-Emilion, he took the position of Enologist in charge of Production for the Château Fourcas Loubaney and the Château la Dominique Saint-Emilion, Grand Cru Classé and Château la Commanderie de Mazeyres Pomerol, a post he held until 2004. Since January 2005 he has been Winemaker of Ornellaia - Bolgheri (Livorno). Of French-German origin, he has perfect mastery of Italian, English, French and Spanish.
Giovanni Geddes da Filicaja
Masseto CEO Giovanni Geddes da Filicaja was born in Florence and comes from a family of Scottish (Geddes) and Italian (da Filicaja) origin. His ancestors were influential in Florence since the 13th century and were one of the Anglo-Florentine families that contributed to knitting close ties between the UK and Florence.
Giovanni Geddes began his career at a premier Italian importer of fine wines. In 1977, that company was acquired by Remy Cointreau (Remy Martin, Cointreau, Krug, Piper Heidsiek, etc.), and he became CEO of the Italian company.
From 1983 to 1994 Geddes was CEO of Antinori, working to strengthen the estate's brand image. Subsequently, he spent two years as a strategic consultant for the reorganization of world-wide distribution of the Remy Cointreau Group.
At the same time, he began consulting with the Florentine winery Frescobaldi on the strategic positioning and organization of the brand, and in 1996, he became CEO of Frescobaldi and a member of the board and Executive Committee of Luce. Since December 1999, Giovanni Geddes has been CEO of Ornellaia and Masseto.
The eldest of six brothers and sisters, he grew up speaking English and French as well as Italian.
Married to a half English half Swedish wife with two daughters, aged 28 and 24.