Castellani Chianti Annata 2018
Food Pairing: Delicious partner to spicy pasta dishes. Ideal with roasts, steaks and grilled veal.
The Castellani Family produce classic wines in Tuscany since more than 150 years. Every generation continually experiment with their vineyards and cellars in order to select the best Tuscan wines to be bottled under the family brand.
Exporters of wine since 1903, the Castellani family have founded their high-quality wines on the belief that "the quality of the wine starts in the vineyard". For the past 25 years, the family has worked hard to refine the soil types and microclimates that enhance their 'great Tuscan vines', investing in research and new technologies to ensure the Castellani name continues to be associated with 'memorable wines'.
As a warm breeze rustles new sprouts, the picturesque Tyrrhenian Sea serves as the backdrop for rolling hills of grapevines that spread as far as the eye can see. There are many ways to describe the illustrious Central Italian wine region known as Tuscany, but Piergiorgio Castellani and his family use only one word: home. The Castellani family has lived and produced wines for over a century in Tuscany, where the craft of winemaking has been honed and passed down for generations.
A believer in maintaining the balance between nature and the modern world, Piergiorgio and his family reside in the middle of one of his vineyards, which helps influence the personal closeness he feels to the wine his family makes. “I think this is the best way to certify the quality of what you produce; is when you live in the cultivation that you farm,” he says. The special conditions, both climatic and cultural, that exist in Tuscany already offer everything a winemaker needs, but that could quickly change if the land they cultivate is not cared for.
It’s this 360-degree commitment to the environment that enables Piergiorgio to produce high-quality wines year after year. He renounces using chemical treatments and is continually updating his vineyards to maintain organic and natural farming techniques. This confluence between traditional winemaking practices, modern technological advances, and a deep reverence and appreciation for nature fuels the Castellani family’s continued success in producing incredible, robust Italian wines.
Famous for its food-friendly, approachable wines and their storied history, Chianti is perhaps the best-known wine region of Italy. This appellation within Tuscany has it all: sweeping views of rolling hills, endless vineyards, the warm Mediterranean sun, hearty cuisine and a rich artistic heritage. Chianti includes seven subzones: Chianti Colli Fiorentini, Rufina, Montalbano, Colli Senesi, Colline Pisane, Colli Aretini and Montespertoli, with area beyond whose wines can be labeled simply as Chianti.
However the best quality comes from Chianti Classico, in the heart of the Chianti zone, which is no longer a subzone of the region at all but has been recognized on its own since 1996. The Classico region today is delimited by the confines of the original Chianti zone protected since the 1700s.
Chianti wines are made primarily of Sangiovese, with other varieties comprising up to 25-30% of the blend. Generally, local varieties are used, including Canaiolo, Colorino and Mammolo, but international varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah are allowed as long as they are grown within the same zone.
Basic, value-driven Chianti is simple and fruit-forward and makes a great companion to any casual dinner. At its apex, Chianti is full bodied but with good acidity, firm tannins, and notes of tart red fruit, dried herbs, fennel, balsamic and tobacco. Chianti Riserva, typically the top bottling of a producer, can benefit handsomely from a decade or two of cellaring.
Among Italy's elite red grape varieties, Sangiovese has the perfect intersection of bright red fruit and savory earthiness and is responsible for the best red wines of Tuscany. While it is best known as the chief component of Chianti, it is also the main grape in Vino Nobile di Montepulciano and reaches the height of its power and intensity in the complex, long-lived Brunello di Montalcino. Somm Secret—Sangiovese doubles under the alias, Nielluccio, on the French island of Corsica where it produces distinctly floral and refreshing reds and rosés.