Clos des Goisses 1990
Strågul med touch av brune epler og honning. Overraskende mye utviklet og flasken er nok ikke optimalt lagret. Moden, bitter og kraftfull. Mørk pinot-frukt, en vinøs rik og deilig champagne. Men overraskende mange 1990 champagner viser nå foruroligende mye modningsaromaer. 91-93 poeng.
Barolo Cannubi Boschis 1998, Sandrone
Chianti Classico Riserva Poggio delle Rose 1998, Castell`n Villa
God intens kjernefrukt med elegante kirsebær og et moderat fatpreg. Ca. 50% barrique. 90 poeng
This wine is made purely from a selection of our own Sangiovese cuttings, which have then been planted in this particular vineyard, which gives its name to the wine. It has been vinified according to the high standards and special methods used here at Castell’in Villa and then stored in new French oak barriques for more than 18 months.
Fontalloro 1999, Felsina
Krydret, salvie, urter og noe Chinato over denne. Mørk og intens vin, den rare nesa blir borte etterhvert. Mangler endel eleganse, men vinen har holdt seg godt. 90 poeng
Felsina is an estate with ancient history, although it is only in the last few decades that it has morphed into a Chianti estate of the highest quality. This all began in 1961, when Domenico Poggiali acquired the buildings and 57 ha of vineyards that are now largely run by his son-in-law Guiseppe Mazzocolin, who married Gloria Poggiali. An examination of more ancient history, however, reveals Felsina's fascinating past. Already in existence by the 12th Century, this estate, or grancia, was once a roadside hospital manned by Benedictine monks, who tended to the needs of the sick and weary pilgrims that passed by on the Strata de Rancia. The monks worked in association with the staff at the nearby Santa Maria della Scala hospital in Siena, a huge complex of Medieval buildings opposite the Duomo, the town's cathedral, both of which I mentioned in my introduction to my Siena trip.
The estate is located in the most south-eastern part of the Chianti Classico zone, just up the road from Castelnuovo Berardenga, and just a stone's throw from Siena itself. The Medieval towers of the town are clearly visible from the Felsina vineyards, as shown on the left, the vineyards peaking with a sandstone outcrop at 420m. Other soils are typical of the Chianti region, being galestro (shale, a form of compacted clay) and albarese (a lime and clay soil with limestone rocks), although some vineyards include some heavier clay soils, lending more body to the final product. About 6 ha of the classic Chianti soils, cropped at 40-45 hl/ha, are the source of the estate's flagship wine, the Felsina Chianti Classico Riserva Rancia, rancia a derivative of grancia, above. The fruit sees temperature-controlled fermenttaion, before 12-18 months in small barrels, then a further 6 months in bottle prior to release. This is, in my opinion, not just the estate's leading wine, but also one of Tuscany's premier wines, challenging any Sangiovese, be it Chianti, Brunello or Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, on a matter of quality.
Others would perhaps place the IGT Fontalloro over the Rancia; this is an impressive wine made from Sangiovese grown on the Fontalloro or Poggio al Sole vineyard, classic soils within the Classico zone, as well as the Casalino and Arcidossino vineyards in the Chianti Colli Senesi region, where the soils are much heavier clays. Once in the winery, the fruit is handled in much the same way as that of the Rancia Riserva. There is also a Chianti Classico Riserva, which is produced exclusively for the North American market, and a straight Chianti Classico. Felsina also maintain the production of a traditional Vin Santo, from Malvasia, Trebbiano and Sangiovese. The international varieties also have a presence, with a Cabernet Sauvignon from vines grafted onto old rootstock in 1984, Maestro Raro, and I Sistri, a Chardonnay.
Giuseppe Mazzocolin, aided by consultant Franco Bernabei, has enjoyed great success at Felsina, facilitating expansion by purchase of the neighbouring property, Pagliarese. This purchase allowed the replanting of Felsina, whilst the Pagliarese estate provided the fruit. The vineyards are managed by Agostino Buracchi, who has overseen new plantings at Felsina, at a density of 5400 vines/ha, more than that at the old Pagliarese estate (which will be replanted) where it is 3200 vines/ha. The vineyards are orintated south-southwest, Guyot trained, see summer-time canopy management in the form of leaf plucking, a green harvest in August if required, before hand harvesting when the fruit is ripe.
Barbaresco Asili 1995, Bruno Giacosa
Ren, rød og lys. Elegant Bruno-format. Finmasket, lang, snev av modne jordbær, deilig og smooth munnfølelse. Lang og krydret, "asian-spicy". Prime-time for denne nå. 92-94 poeng.