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Fontodi Chianti Classico Riserva Vigna del Sorbo 1999

Sangiovese from Chianti, Tuscany, Italy
  • WS91
  • RP91
0% ABV
  • RP95
  • JS93
  • WS92
  • WE92
  • JS95
  • RP94
  • WS90
  • JS94
  • RP93
  • WS90
  • RP95
  • WS95
  • RP95
  • RP96
  • WE93
  • WS91
  • RP90
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Winemaker Notes

Critical Acclaim

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WS 91
Wine Spectator
Impressive aromas of crushed berries, with hints of cedar. Full-bodied, with round and velvety tannins and a long, bright, fruity finish.
RP 91
Robert Parker's 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.
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Fontodi

Fontodi

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Fontodi, Chianti, Tuscany, Italy
1999 Chianti Classico Riserva Vigna del Sorbo
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.

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.

CWYRISERVA_1999 Item# 131594

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