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Castellare Chianti Classico Riserva Il Poggiale 2009

Sangiovese from Chianti, Tuscany, Italy
  • RP94
  • JS91
13.7% ABV
  • WE90
  • RP94
  • W&S91
  • WE92
  • W&S91
  • JS94
  • WS90
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3.5 3 Ratings
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3.5 3 Ratings
13.7% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Made from 90% Sangioveto, 5% Canaiolo, and 5% Ciliegiolo grown in the Il Poggiale vineyard, the grapes come from an elevation of almost 1,500 feet above sea level. The combination of high elevation and extremely low yields results in a wine that manages to simultaneously show both restraint and layered richness. This classic red holds great aging capability.

This Riserva is a brilliant garnet color with layered aromas of red cherries, earth, rose flowers, and leather. On the palate, the wine shows excellent structure with firm, integrated tannins and is full-bodied with plenty of spice.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 94
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The single-vineyard 2009 Chianti Classico Riserva Il Poggiale is huge. Black fruit, smoke and licorice are some of the notes that burst from the glass in this extroverted wine. The Poggiale is a bit juicier and richer than the straight Riserva, but the two wines are as differentiated as they often are. Still, it is impossible not to admire the sheer balance and harmony of what is in the glass. The Poggiale is 90% Sangioveto, 5% Caniaolo and 5% Ciliegiolo, aged in French oak barrels, 10% new. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2029.
JS 91
James Suckling
A wine with lots of new wood giving vanilla and milk chocolate character with jammy fruit undertones. Full and soft. Drink now.
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Castellare

Castellare

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Castellare, Chianti, Tuscany, Italy
Image of winery
The vineyards of this 46 acre estate are found in a natural amphitheater in the heart of Tuscany's Chianti Classico region. The story of Castellare is the story of Paolo Panerai, who entered the world of winemaking at age 37 after a career in Italian journalism. Panerai feels it is important to understand and respect the experience of the world's best wineries and to apply this understanding to viticulture in Italy. He has great respect for technology from other winemaking regions and chooses to utilize this technology to move forward while rediscovering and reshaping some of the great traditions of Tuscany.

The birds on Castellare's labels symbolize Panerai's commitment to environmentally sound cultivation. Herbicides are not used, nor are any systemic pesticides. Chemical treatment of any kind is shunned. Hunting is also prohibited on the property. As a result of these practices, the property has become a virtual refuge for wildlife, including many of the birds pictured on the labels.

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.

Sangiovese

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The perfect intersection of bright fruit and savory earthiness, Sangiovese is the backbone variety in Tuscany. While it is best known as the chief component of Chianti, it reaches the height of its power and intensity in the complex, long-lived Brunello di Montalcino. Elsewhere throughout Italy, it can make inexpensive wines for daily consumption ranging from inoffensive to deliciously easy. On the French island of Corsica, under the name Nielluccio, it produces excellent bright and refreshing red and rosé wines with a personality of their own. Sangiovese has also enjoyed moderate popularity in California and Washington State over the last few decades.

In the Glass

Sangiovese is a medium-bodied red with savory flavors of tart cherry, plum, tomato, fresh tobacco, anise, thyme, oregano, and dried earth. High-quality, well-aged examples will take on notes of smoke, clay pot, leather, gamey meat, potpourri, and dried fruits. Corsican Nielluccio is distinguished by a subtle perfume of dried flowers.

Perfect Pairings

Sangiovese is the ultimate pizza and pasta red—its high acidity, moderate alcohol, and grainy tannins create an affinity with tomato-based dishes, spicy meats, and anything off the barbecue.

Sommelier Secret

Although it is the star variety of Tuscany, cult-classic “Super-Tuscan” wines may contain no Sangiovese at all! Since the 1970s, local winemakers have been producing big, bold wines (with price tags to match) that are typically monovarietal or a blend of one or more of several international varieties—usually Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, or Syrah—with or without Sangiovese.

YNG344022_2009 Item# 121244