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2014 Chianti Classico

Castagnoli

2014 Chianti Classico Castagnoli - Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant

The Castagnoli vineyards, just outside of Castellina in Chianti, are a sight to behold: sprawling over stone terraces carved out of a steep hillside, they look out on the magnificent Tuscan landscape to the south, with towering Monte Amiata looming in the distance. The high altitude here—up to 450 meters—and stony soil, littered with flaky blue chunks of galestro (a schistous clay found locally), give a unique expression of Sangiovese showing minerality, lift, and exotic aromatics in contrast with the chunkier, more corporeal wines common elsewhere in the Chianti zone. Adding to this is the bright, fresh character of the 2014 vintage, a cooler and rainier year that yielded wines lighter in color and body than is typical in Tuscany. The result is a Chianti of great elegance and drinkability, refined by aging in large casks and still showing a pleasant fleshiness, thanks to the unfiltered bottling. It is the perfect match for rustic Mediterranean cuisine.

Anthony Lynch

Vintage: 2014
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: Sangiovese
Appellation: Chianti Classico
Country: Italy
Region: Tuscany
Producer: Castagnoli
Winemaker: Alfred Schefenacker
Vineyard: 5 – 8 years
Soil: Galestro Schist
Aging: Wine ages for 18 months in neutral oak barrels (18hl and 4/5hl)
Farming: Organic (certified)
Alcohol: 13.5%

More from this Producer or Region

About Tuscany

Perhaps no region is tied to Italy’s reputation as a producer of fine wine as much as Tuscany. Since Etruscan times, viticulture has played a prominent role in this idyllic land of rolling hills, and the Tuscan winemaking tradition remains as strong as ever today. With a favorable Mediterranean climate, an undulating topography offering countless altitudes and expositions, and a wealth of poor, well-draining soils, conditions are ideal for crafting high-quality wines. Add to that the rich gastronomical tradition—Tuscany is home to some of the country’s finest game, pastas, salumi, and cheeses—and you have the blueprint for a world-class wine region.

This is Sangiovese territory; in fact, it is arguably the only place in the world where Sangiovese reaches a truly regal expression. In spite of a rocky history with fluctuations in quality, traditionally produced Chianti has reclaimed its status as one of the country’s most reliable, food-friendly reds, while the rapid rise of Brunello di Montalcino shows the grape’s potential for grandiose, opulent reds allying power and finesse. Traditionally-minded growers have stuck to using only indigenous grape varieties and employing techniques like aging in massive wooden casks known as botti, creating wines of terroir that shine at the Tuscan table.

Tuscan wines have had a place in our portfolio since Kermit’s first visit in 1977. While the names of the estates have changed, the spirit of those first unfiltered Chiantis he imported live on through our current selections.

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Great winemakers, great terroirs, there is never any hurry. And I no longer buy into this idea of “peak” maturity. Great winemakers, great terroirs, their wines offer different pleasures at different ages.

Inspiring Thirst, page 312

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