New $20 Sangiovese: Pure, Inky, Refreshing

Like Chablis, the name Chianti for decades brought to mind inexpensive, mass market plonk. Even today, a straw-covered “fiasco” bottle with dripping candle wax remains one of the brand’s strongest associations.

But the quality of wine made in Chianti has improved in the last three decades as much as any wine in the world. Blending rule changes and the advent of new technology has meant a surge in quality across the region.

And none is more celebrated than the Fattoria Poggerino, a source Rajat Parr calls “excellent,” and “some of the purest expressions of the grape in Italy.” We’ve just received three new Poggerino cuvées into the warehouse.

Poggerino is in Radda-in-Chianti, an ancient town nestled into a charming Tuscan hillside. Poggerino’s sangiovese vines could all be classified as Chainti Classico, but winemaker Piero Lanza reserves the fruit from the “younger” vines (35 years old) for his simpler cuvée, Il Labirinto.

The name Sangiovese refers to its inky color – the name translates to “blood of Jove” – and this dense, tannic grape can produce powerful wine with beautiful floral aromas. The Labirinto 2017 has just arrived and it’s just about impossible to put down. The nose is very ripe and juicy, with plum and sweet cherry notes. The mouth is young, earthy, and vibrant, with sturdy tannins under a smooth patina of fruit jam.

This is lively and pleasantly drinkable on its own, but like most wines, it’s best enjoyed with the other fruits of its home terroir. Try a homemade pizza dough or a pasta with a tomato based sauce.



Poggerino Labirinto 2017
bottle price: $19.95

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