Fontodi Chianti Classico Riserva Vigna del Sorbo 1999
Sangiovese from Tuscany, Italy
Wine Spectator - "Impressive aromas of crushed berries, with hints of cedar. Full-bodied, with round and velvety tannins and a long, bright, fruity finish."
The Wine Advocate - "While it may appear expensive, the sensational 1999 Chianti Classico Riserva Sorbo (a barrique-aged blend of 90% Sangiovese and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon) is a top-flight effort. The color is a deep ruby/purple. The nose offers up gorgeously sweet, expansive aromas of melted licorice, black cherries, currants, underbrush, and a hint of camphor. Dense, chewy, full-bodied, and fabulously pure, with a multilayered, textured mid-palate as well as a long, savory, well-delineated, moderately tannic finish, this is a compelling Chianti to drink now and over the next 10-12 years. "
International Wine Cellar - "Medium garnet. Lovely cherry aromas, followed by flavors of anise, redcurrant, cranberry and cherry. Generous and well-extracted, with mouthcoating but ripe tannins. Long, sweet finish. More intensely flavored than the regular 1999 offering."
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Fontodi is located in the heart of Chianti Classico precisely in the valley which lies south of the town of Panzano and is called the "Conca d’Oro" (the golden shell) because of its amphitheatre shape. A genuine and characteristc "Terroir," famous for centuries for its tradition of quality wine cultivation, thanks to a unique combination of high altitude, calcar clayschist soil, lots of light, and a fantastic micro-climate. View all Fontodi 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 & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.