On the Road with the Grape Guy

On the Road with the Grape Guy is a on-going feature that follows me from event to event ... I post my thoughts, feelings and reviews of what happened and what I tasted ... basically it is here that I review the events I attend and the things that thrilled me.

Report from : Chianti Classico Riserva - Anteprima 2020

13 Aug 2020

 480 Wines

(February 2020) – Tuscany … Seems like it has been forever since I went to this tasting in Florence, Italy – and I do miss the country so much, it is true that absence makes the heart grow fonder; but now let’s look at step one of this tasting and the reason we are all there – to taste the newest vintage of Chianti Classico Riservas.

The glassesThis year 198 wineries participated and 480 wines were on display: 214 Chianti Classico, 153 Chianti Classico Riserva and 113 Gran Selezione. Vintages ranged from the 2018 Chianti Classico to a 2007 Riserva. The tasting occurs over the course of two days during the Chianti Classico Anteprima 2020 and it is the largest organized tasting of the week.

For many years I focused on tasting the Annata wines, but this year I looked mainly at the Riserva and Gran Selezione … I tasted about 80% of the Riserva and below you can see the list of wines that impressed me.

While 29 of the Riserva wines were from the 2017 vintage, which is the newest vintage that can be released to the public – the real story here is the 82x 2016 Riserva wines, which far out-numbered any of the years that were on display … wineries are still touting these wines and for good reason, the vintage was (by many accounts) “perfect”, and has benefitted from extra time both in barrel and bottle.

Below is a list of the wines that truly represented, to me, the best of the Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG wines I tasted (in alphabetical order by producer / by star rating) – everything rated is a “finished” wine, those still “unfinished” or considered barrel samples are rated for potential on a Good/Better/Best scale and can be found under the star rated wines:

(All scoring is out of 5 stars)

 

Chianti Classico Riserva range of wines
2017 / 2016 / 2015 / 2014 / 2013 / 2012 / 2007  (DOCG) …The Chianti Collection


Three and a Half Stars …

Arillo in Terrabianca 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva “Croce”
Bibbiano 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva
Bonacchi 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva
Casa Emma 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva
Castagnoli 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva “Terrazze”
Castelli del Grevepesa 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva “Clemente VII”
Castello di Cacchiano 2015 Chianti Classico Riserva
Castello Vicchiomaggio 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva “Agostino Petri”
Conte Guicciardini 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva “Belvedere Campoli”
Famiglia Cecchi 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva “Villa Cerna”
Fattoria Montecchio 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva
Fattorie Melini 2015 Chianti Classico Riserva “Vigneti La Selvanella”
I Sodi 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva
Losi Quewrciavalle 2015 Chianti Classico Riserva
Maurizio Alongi 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva “Vigna Barbischio”
Nardi Viticoltori 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva
Panzanello 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva
Poggerino 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva “Bugialla”
Rocca delle Macie 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva “Sergioveto”
Villa Montepaldi 2015 Chianti Classico Riserva “Tagliafune”


Three and a Half Plus Stars …

Borratella 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva
Cinciano 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva
Gagliole 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva
Lamole di Lamole 2016 Chianti Classico RiservaLamole Riserva
Marchesi Antinori 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva
Marchesi Antinori 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva “Villa Antinori”
Oliviera 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva “Settantanove”
Ormanni 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva “Borro del Diavolo”
Querciabella 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva
Terreno 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva


Four Stars …

Castello di Volpaia 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva
Felsina 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva “Rancia”

 

Four Plus Stars …

Riecine 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva

 

Barrel Samples …
Good / Better / Best

Caparsa 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva … (BETTER)
Dievole 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva “Novecento” … (GOOD)
Fattoria San Giusto a Rentennano 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva “La Baroncole” … (GOOD)
Il Molino di Grace 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva … (GOOD)
La Montanina 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva … (GOOD)
Monteraponi 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva “Il Campitello” … (BETTER)
Pomona 2017 Chianti Classico Riserva … (GOOD)

_______________________________

Links to the other reports in this series …

Report from : Chianti Classico - Anteprima 2020

Report from : Chianti Classico Gran Selezione - Anteprima 2020

 

 

Report from : Chianti Classico Anteprima 2020

11 Aug 2020

(February 2020) – Tuscany … Seems like it has been forever since I went to this tasting in Florence, Italy – and I do miss the country so much, it is true that absence makes the heart grow fonder; but now let’s look at step one of this tasting and the reason we are all there – to taste the newest vintage of Chianti Classico.

This year 198 wineries participated and 480 wines were on display: 214 Chianti Classico, 153 Chianti Classico Riserva and 113 Gran Selezione. Vintages ranged from the 2018 Chianti Classico to a 2007 Riserva. The tasting occurs over the course of two days during the Chianti Classico Anteprima 2020. It is the largest organized tasting of the week.

Having focused for many years on the current vintage this year I shifted my focus, looking mainly at the Riserva and Gran Selezione … for the Annata wines I wanted to get a snap-shot of the vintage and tasted about 25% of them – as opposed to 100% of the Gran Selezione and 80% of the Riserva (reports for each can be found separately) – and will be linked to the bottom of this post once ready.

2018 seems a drinkable but not very impressive vintage … that said it comes after some pretty stellar vintages like the 2015 and 2016, even 2017 was a lovely vintage (though it did have its challenges). The 2018s are a scattershot and one has to be familiar with the producer and their style to be comfortable with what is in the bottle.

Interesting to note that the majority of the Chianti Classicos were from the tasty 2017 vintage (96 wines) – and those looking for drink-early Chianti should be looking at 2017, while they rest their 2016 and even their 2015 … the 2018 still need another year in bottle to fully integrate and hopefully at next year’s Anteprima we’ll have a better idea of what is happening in these bottles.

Below is a list of the wines that truly represented, to me, the best of the Chianti Classico DOCG wines I tasted (in alphabetical order by producer / by star rating) – everything rated is a “finished” wine; “unfinished” or barrel samples are rated for potential on a Good/Better/Best scale and can be found under the star rated wines:

(All scoring is out of 5 stars)

Chianti Classico BookletChianti Classico were a range of
2018 / 2017 / 2016 / 2015 / 2014 / 2013  (DOCG) …


Three and a Half Stars …

Cantina Castelvecchi 2017 Chianti Classico “Capotondo”
Castelli del Grevepesa 2017 Chianti Classico “Clemente VII”
Castello Vicchiomaggio 2018 Chianti Classico “Guado Alto”
Conti Capponi 2017 Chianti Classico “Villa Calcinaia”
Felsina 2018 Chianti Classico “Berardenga”
I Sodi 2017 Chianti Classico
Isole e Olena 2017 Chianti Classico
Lamole di Lamole 2017 Chianti Classico
Ottomani 2017 Chianti Classico
Podere L’Aja 2016 Chianti Classico
Poggio Bonelli 2017 Chianti Classico
Tolaini 2018 Chianti Classico “Vallenuova”
Vignamaggio 2017 Chianti Classico “Terre di Prenzano”


Three and a Half Plus Stars …

Banfi 2018 Chianti Classico “Fonte alla Selva”
Carpineto 2018 Chianti Classico
Monteraponi 2018 Chianti Classico
Nardi Viticoltori 2017 Chianti Classico
Rocca delle Macie 2018 Chianti Classico “Famiglia Zingarelli”


Four Stars … Podere L'Aja

Podere L’Aja 2016 Chianti Classico “Chielle”
Terreno 2016 Chianti Classico “ASofia”


Barrel Samples …
Good / Better / Best

Brancaia 2018 Chianti Classico … (BETTER)
Fattoria Carpineta Fontalpino 2018 Chianti Classico “Dofana” … (GOOD)
Fattoria Carpineta Fontalpino 2018 Chianti Classico “Montaperto” … (BETTER)
I Fabbri 2018 Chianti Classico “Lamole” … (BETTER)
Isole e Olena 2018 Chianti Classico … (BEST)

_______________________________

Links to the other reports in this series …

Report from : Chianti Classico Riserva - Anteprima 2020

Report from : Chianti Classico Gran Selezione - Anteprima 2020

 

 

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