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Castello di Monsanto Chianti Classico Riserva 2005

Sangiovese from Chianti, Tuscany, Italy
  • RP90
  • JS93
  • WS91
  • JS93
  • WE92
  • RP90
  • WS92
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Winemaker Notes

The 2005 Chianti Classico Riserva reveals a profile of red berries, herbs, crushed flowers and spices. The wine possesses an attractive up-front personality and finessed tannins, but it does taper off a bit on the mid-palate. In this rain-plagued vintage Monsanto did not produce its Riserva Il Poggio, and the best fruit from that site was added to this Riserva bottling, which was aged in a variety of used French oak barrels. Anticipated maturity: 2008-2017.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 90
The Wine Advocate

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Castello di Monsanto

Castello di Monsanto

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Castello di Monsanto, , Italy
Castello di Monsanto
In 1961 Fabrizio Bianchi, a successful textile manufacturer from Milan, purchased Castello di Monsanto and, in so doing, realized a long-held dream. Captivated by the beauty of Tuscany and convinced of the property's winemaking potential, Bianchi undertook the complete restoration of the vineyards and winery, while his wife, Giuliana, oversaw the restoration of the villa. Bianchi has relentlessly pursued the highest standards of quality, with particular emphasis on grape selection, natural vinification and a judicious use of technology.

A picturesque Mediterranean nation with a rich wine culture dating back to ancient times, Greece has so much more to offer than just retsina. Between the mainland and the country’s many islands, a wealth of wine styles exist, made mostly from Greece’s plentiful indigenous varieties. Still suffering for centuries after Ottoman rule, the modern wine industry did not truly begin here until the late 20th century, after a mass influx of newly trained winemakers and investments in winemaking technology. The climate—generally hot Mediterranean—can vary a bit with latitude and elevation, and is often moderated by cool maritime breezes. Drought can be an issue during the long, dry summers, often necessitating irrigation.

Over 300 indigenous grapes have been identified throughout Greece, and though not all of them are suitable for wine production, future decades will likely see a significant revival of many of these native varieties. Assyrtiko, the crisp, saline variety of the island of Santorini, is one of the most important and popular white varieties, alongside Roditis, Robola, Moschofilero, and Malagousia. Muscat is also widely grown for both sweet and dry wines. Prominent red varieties include soft and fruity Agiorghitiko, native to Nemea; Macedonia’s savory, tannic Xinomavro; and Mavrodaphne, used commonly to produce a Port-like fortified wine in the Peloponnese.

Other Red Blends

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With hundreds of red grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World experimentation is permitted and encouraged. Blending can be utilized to create complex wines with many different layers of flavors and aromas, or to create more balanced wines. For example, a variety that is soft and full-bodied may be combined with one that is lighter with naturally high acidity. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.

SWS196917_2005 Item# 96495

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