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Borgo Scopeto Chianti Classico 2000
Borgo Scarpeto is an old and well-established estate producer of Chianti Classico and is a true borgo - a hamlet with its own church, post office, town center and residences. Elizabetta Gnudi owns Borgo Scopeto, and she and winemaker Simone Giunti are responsible for all aspects of the production of Borgo Scopeto wines.
The Chianti Classico of Borgo Scopeto comes from Castelnuovo Berardenga, which is the southern-most commune within the Chianti Classico zone. All vineyards at Borgo Scopeto are dry farmed from the day the vines are first planted.
Famous for its food-friendly, approachable wines and their storied history, Chianti is perhaps the best-known wine region of Italy. This sub-zone of Tuscany has it all—sweeping views of undulating hills, the hot Mediterranean sun, hearty cuisine, and a rich artistic heritage. Historically packaged in short, round, straw-covered bottles known as “fiaschi” and containing insipid red liquid, Chianti today is typically not your Italian grandfather’s pizza wine. The heart of the Chianti zone is known as Chianti Classico, as the region has expanded its boundaries over time to capitalize on the wine’s fame, thus diluting its reputation. Within Chianti there are seven other subzones with unique characteristics, including Colli Senesi, Colli Fiorentini, and Chianti Rufina.
Chianti wines are made primarily of Sangiovese, with other varieties comprising up to 20% of the blend. Generally, local varieties are used, including Canaiolo, Mammolo, and Marzemino, but international varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah have also been approved in more recent years. Basic, inexpensive Chianti is simple and fruit-forward and makes a great companion to any casual dinner involving red sauce. At its apex, it is savory and rustic with high acidity, firm tannins, and notes of tart red fruit, dried herbs, fennel, salami, balsamic vinegar, and smoky tobacco. Chianti Riserva, typically the top bottling of a producer, can benefit handsomely from a decade or two of cellaring.
Ranging in style from light and elegant to bold and structured, red wine is produced just about everywhere in the world vines are planted. There are several dozen varieties that contribute to the majority of wine production, including Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot. These are grown throughout the world, in addition to the many native varieties found in their respective regions. Red grapes tend to ripen better in warmer, sunnier climates—producing more robust and concentrated wines--though some of the world’s most elegant red wines come from cooler regions where alcohol levels are kept at bay and natural acidity remains crisp and refreshing.
Both red and white grapes have clear juice—the difference is in the skins. This is where pigments, as well as tannins, are found. When making red wine, the juice is left in contact with the skins, leeching out these pigments with the help of heat and alcohol generated by fermentation. For a more deeply colored wine, the winemaker has several options in the cellar including increasing the fermentation temperature or prolonging the skin-contact period. The resulting shade of red can range from pale garnet to bright ruby to opaque purple.