Tuesday, June 17, 2014

From the Hills of Florence...


~ Entrance to Villa Lucignano ~

I think you will agree with me that history takes on a different meaning when your family lineage dates for almost 900 years.  Such is the case with today's storied family; residents on the hills outside Florence since the 1100's.
 
The Lucignano estate is set on 150 hectares and lies on the stunning ridge between San Casciano Val di Pesa and Montespertoli.  Geologically the land dates back to the Pliocene, with limestone and clay formations rich in gravel and minerals which are ideal for growing high quality grape vines and olive trees.
 
With over 5,000 olive trees dotting the vineyards, the cultivated land is approximately 34 hectares. The balance of the property is devoted to the wine cellars which lie beneath the imposing 16th Century Villa.
 
~ An early charcoal sketch of the Villa in the Family's Library ~

With Chianti Classico the standard bearer for wines featuring the Chianti name, it is often overlooked that there are seven additional subzones of the Chianti region; Colli Fiorentini among them.  It's noted that Chianti Classico is actually it's own DOCG zone, and not a subzone of the broader "Chianti" DOCG.  
 
As I remarked in my recent Podcast with Total Tuscany,  this doesn't mean the wines outside of Chianti Classico are inherently inferior.  Not in the least.  It simply means they're different and as with many other qualitative products, it's the hands of the producer that matter in the end. See also Campochiarenti.





Today's subject wine is the 2010 Fattoria Lucignano Chianti Colli Fiorentini which sports a unique eye catching label; if not a slightly busy one.  It somehow reminds me of parchement or currency and while it's by no means "clean" I found myself unable to look away....
 
The wine is a blend of  Sangiovese 80%, Canaiolo 10%, Merlot 5%, and Colorino 5%
 and is a deep ruby in the glass.  We did not decant the wine.  A very expressive nose of black olive, cured meat, red fruits and spices greet the taster. I have noticed that Colli Fiorentini seem to exhibit the meatier side of Chianti - it's a trend that I notice repeats itself and I can only attribute it to the unique terroir of the subzone. 
 
On the palate, the flavors retain that meaty aspect and are joined by lovely juicy red fruit, and a slight undercurrent of pipe tobacco. This is precise, clean and very well done and quite the value at around $13.   With a simple flash saute of pepper steak with mushrooms and onions, this fit the bill nicely.  88 points. 

~ Note the Ancient Roman V's used in place of the U ~
Salute!






2 comments:

  1. Good wine cheap!
    John: it is amazing how many different and wonderful the wines are from Italy!
    I feel bad for wine lovers that won't experiment with these.
    As for your trip, every time I see a new post on Tuscan Vines, I think you are there! :-)

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  2. Leaving this Saturday my friend! I have a feeling you'll know. :)

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