You’ve probably heard people use the expression “like an old pair of jeans” when describing something both familiar and satisfying. Well for me at least, Chianti is one of those wines that suits me like an old pair of jeans that fit just right. Italian wines were the first wines I was blown away by and while I’ve been extremely fortunate to be able to drink wines from all over the world, there’s something about Italian wines and the way that they hit my palate that’s always so reliably satisfying and enjoyable. So when the opportunity to show off a really beautiful Chianti that drinks way above its price came along, I jumped at the chance.
Originally built as a fortress on the top of a hill overlooking the heart of Chianti, Castagnoli has been known as a producer of distinction since the 1700’s when members of various royal families would come to visit and learn about the land management and winemaking practices that produced such renowned wines. Castagnoli was there when the consorzio was founded in 1924 and has been a standard-bearer for Chianti Classico ever since.
This week’s wine is Castagnoli’s Chianti Classico, and it is such a spot-on representation of what Chianti is all about. In fact, Italy’s most famous wine reviewing organization gave it its highest award, the Tre Bicchieri, for being an outstanding example of Chianti Classico. Vibrant and complex aromas of cherry, Seville orange, and violets form a lovely perfume that invites you to just keep enjoying the aromatics. On the palate the wine shows this wonderful interplay between the zippy acidity and the fine tannins that create a wonderful textural component without the wine being heavy or fatiguing in the mouth. This would be an outstanding pairing with an aged, hard cheese like Parmigiano Reggiano, roasted meats, and of course, pasta.