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Chianti Classico tasting notes

text and photographs © 2009 Tom Cannavan

These notes accompany our in-depth feature on The Wines of Chianti Classico.


Chianti Classico Riserva 2000
Lovely nose of swirling, smoky, tight, racy blackcurrant and black cherry fruit. Very svelte. Beautifully fresh palate, with terrifically pure and sweetly ripe fruit. Deliciously fine and balanced wine with lithe, refined tannins and spicy character. Just gorgeous. 93/100.

Chianti Classico Riserva 1985
Lovely old, maturing nose with touches of undergrowth and brown sugar, but still a freshness and herbal and cherry character. Lovely palate with that bif sour cherry and lemon zest freshness. This has lovely length and spicy warmth but never loses clarity and focus. Another terrific wine. 93/100.

Poggio della Rose IGT Toscana 2003
Old-vine Sangiovese aged in barrique. Distinctly different from the 2000 Chianti Classico, with more weight and glossy ripeness, and the palate. This has the freshness of the estate's style, but there is a creamy liquorice and cedary twist of oak and svelte tannin. 91/100.

Santacroce 2003
50/50 blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Sangiovese. A slightly schisty, lean edge with charcoal but sweet blackcurrant fruit and a touch of cedar. 90/100.

Chianti Classico Riserva 1977
Lovely nose, with some sweet, rotting vegetation. And glorious blackcurrant and sweet, ripe cherry fruit on the palate. It has such sweetness and plump, glossy ripeness, but then the silky, plush tannins and decisive acidity push in, adding just an element of grip and freshness. 95/100.

Vin Santo 1999
Trebbiano and Malvasia and a touch of Sangiovese. Toasty nose with a load of marmalade and honey and bright lemony notes. The palate has full figgy richness, with a lovely background of coffee and chocoalate and really good tangerine and lemon acidity. Deliciously drinkable. 92/100.

Not in the UK at present.

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