Fontaleoni Vernaccia 2011
Italy | Chianti | San Gimignano
“Fontaleoni is one of the elite producers in this zone, devoting much time and energy to Vernaccia, and making very good reds.” – International Wine Cellar Jul/Aug 07
Azienda Agricola Fontaleoni is a small estate whose vineyards are located at 200 meters above sea level, the ideal altitude for growing the Vernaccia varietal. It was established in 1959 when the Troiani family, vignerons for generations, moved to Tuscany. Restructured in the nineties, the cellar was renovated and new vineyards were planted in order to produce high-quality wines. To have modern and sophisticated equipment is particularly important for Vernaccia, as this grape has a delicate nature and a very very fragile skin that breaks easily when reaching full ripeness. Low yields of grapes, careful harvest and pressing of this fragile grape, and conscientious winemaking, have produced Vernaccia wines that continue to grow in quality and fame every year since the first bottling in 1994.
Veritable in its expression, Vernaccia can showcase a wide range of flavors, but one trait all Vernaccia possesses is a crisp acidity that the painter Michelangelo said, “…kisses, licks, bites, pinches and stings” with a subtle, pleasant finish often described as green almond. This 100% Vernaccia offers white peach, floral fruit on the nose with medium body and a dry, fresh finish. Paired beautifully with seafoods (mussels in particular), soft cheeses, and cream based sauces.
Castel Vecchio Orme in Rosso 2009
Italy | Firenze | San Casciano Val di Pesa
The Castelvecchio farm is in San Pancrazio in the municipality of San Casciano Val di Pesa, 20 km from Florence, in Chianti DOCG. Since 1960 the farm has worked 73 hectares of land, 30 of which are vineyards, and 15 are dedicated to olive groves. Historically, Castelvecchio was one of the most important holdings of the Cavalcanti family. The name of the property can be seen on a parchment from 1189, making note of a real estate transaction, and in which reference is made to a CastelVecchio (or Old Castle) in Val di Pesa. The building traces the variable fortunes of the Cavalcanti family until the battle of Monteaperti, where CastelVecchio was razed to the ground. In the 15th century, almost directly on top of the ruins, the present villa was built. Later abandoned, the house fell into disrepair where it languished as a simple farmhouse forgotten in the midst of a thick wood. In 1960, Renzo Rocchi properly restored the villa to its former elegance replete with the dignified air, becoming a Manor Estate. Though it was in a spirit of lightheartedness that the wine cellars were built and the vineyards planted, its resurrection stemmed from a love and passion for the country-side.
This wine is produced from a 50% blend of traditional Sangiovese with 30% Merlot and 20% Petit Verdot cultivated in CastelVecchio’s vineyards. Ageing of 12 months takes place in French oak barriques with further refinement in bottle. The first vintage presented was 2007. The label, with distinguishing red lines remind one of the Tuscan landscape ~ 3 hills in sequences and also the three generations producing this wine. Offering rich berry flavors, mild tannin, and balance – enjoy with grilled or roasted red meats.
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