Capannelle Chianti Classico Riserva 2003
Sangiovese from Tuscany, Italy
Deep ruby red with purplish reflections. The bouquet jumps out of the glass and shows toast, coffee, chocolate, vanilla, red fruits. Long and persistent with intensity, develops slowly into moss, brushwood, iris, juniper and a little of wild fennel. In mouth it is a little astringent, warm, structured, fresh, tannins. Taste of iris, undergrown, musk mixed with vanilla.
The Wine Advocate - "Capanelle's 2003 Chianti Classico Riserva is a powerful, enveloping wine loaded with the essence of sweet red cherries, menthol, smoke and tar. The wine possesses compelling inner sweetness and vibrancy, yet today those qualities are trapped behind a wall of massive tannins that will require a few years in bottle to settle down. This remains a vibrant, perfumed Chianti with a very promising future. Capanelle’s Chianti Classico Riserva is 90% Sangiovese and 10% Colorino and Canaiolo. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2020. "
Capannelle was established in 1974 Raffaele Rossetti, who pioneered stainless steel in the winery, 1-kilo-per-vine crops, new French barriques and French oak fermentation vats when these were all highly futuristic concepts. For many years, the 17th-century estate and avant-garde winery remained an Italian secret: though discovered by young Neil Empson in 1976, Raffaele opted for focusing on the national market only, which the tiny (at the time) production barely covered. Then in 1997, the property was purchased by high-profile U.S. magnate James Sherwood, who maintained Rossetti as consultant but gradually paved the way towards increasing acreage, production and marketing goals.
No expense has been spared to outdo the most state-of-the-art criteria: from the underground winery itself (1,000 square meters - nearly 10,800 square feet - of shock-proof ceramic tiles, to the subterranean barrique cellar, built in the year 2000 - 40 meters long (over 130 feet), 3 meters (almost 10 feet) below ground level, dug into the natural rock.
Yet for all these futuristic aspects, the Capannelle building itself is a characteristic chiantigiana stonehouse villa on one of the appellation's gentle hilltops, overlooking Gaiole on one side, vines and woodland on the other. In other words: classic and timeless. The range itself, styled by oenologist Simone Monciatti, is fortunately as rooted in this 17th-century terrain and millenary tradition as in the most modern quality standards. Its hallmark is elegance: the concentration and extract of low-crop noble varieties are complemented by a nose of great finesse and complexity. View all Capannelle Wines
About TuscanyView a map of Tuscany wineries (TUSS-can-ee) Sangiovese. Most of the wine coming from Tuscany is made from some clone of this varietal, but a growing trend, started by the renegade winemakers of those Super Tuscans, is to incorporate more international varietals.
Notable FactsThe most well known sub-districts of Tuscany are Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano (note that Montepulciano here refers to the local village, not the grape variety found in the Italian region of Abruzzi). Wine labeled from these regions is DOC-regulated and Sangiovese-based blends. Quality wine from these DOC areas has been on the rise for decades, with top-notch winemakers and wineries shedding the low-quality image once held for Tuscan wine by producing consistently outstanding bottlings that range from deliciously drinkable to highly ageable. Newer to the scene are regions like Bohlgeri and the Maremma, home to of what are now termed "Super-Tuscans," named for the wine coming from the Tuscany area, but not following all of the DOC or DOCG laws required in Italy. In the 1970's, some pioneer winemakers began buying land outside of Chianti and Montalcino, and planting not only Sangiovese, but also international varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The wine they produced only fit into the lowest Italian category of "vina da tavola," but the winemakers sold the wine for high prices, creating an almost cult following, and spurning a new wine category called IGT.
A little ditty about Italy...This country has about as many wines as its had governments. With 20 different regions, hundreds of DOCs and even more indigenous varieties, the amount of wine made in Italy is mind-boggling. Most of the juice, however, remains in the country for thirsty Italians. Wine is food in Italy and its rare that a meal is consumed without a glass of vino. That said, it's not common to find many folks drinking wine without food either. In turn, it's a match, and a mighty good one at that. In fact, it's safe to say that Italian wine is a foodie wine – one that goes on the table for a myraid of meals.
For regions, the most popular are Tuscany (home of Chianti), Piedmont and the Tre-Venezie, which includes Veneto, Trentino Alto-Adige and Friuli. Other communes of note are in Southern Italy, and a few good wines are made elsewhere in the country. The islands of Sardinia and Sicily are members of the Italian winemaking community as well.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.