The first wines labelled as Gran Selezione, Chianti Classico’s new top level, were unveiled in February in Florence, amid some controversy. Stephen Brook hears opposing views, picks his best buys and asks whether the category really addresses the importance of terroir

Stephen Brook’s top 12 Gran Selezione wines

Castello di Ama 2010
18.5/20pts (95/100pts)
Rich, creamy cherry nose, with red fruits to perk it up. Suave, velvety and very concentrated. Luxurious but spicy and lively on the finish, with super balance and length.
Price: £35 Fortyfive10 (100,000 bottles made)
Drink 2015-2025
Alc 13.5%

Antinori, Badia a Passignano 2009
18/20pts (93/100pts)
Ripe cherry and vanilla nose, intense and stylish. Broad and fleshy, lacks verve but concentrated and shows ripe tannins and considerable power and drive. Long, pungent finish, still youthful.
Price: £32.30 (2008) Exel (92,000 bottles)
Drink 2015-2025
Alc 14%

Fontodi, Vigna del Sorbo 2010
18/20pts (93/100pts)
Dense plum and black cherry nose, vibrant and oaky. Suave and polished, very spicy, concentrated and powerful. Needs time to shed some youthful aggression. Very long.
Price: £42 Albany Vintners, Bordeaux Index, Hedonism, Nickolls & Perks, Noel Young, Woodwinters (5,000 bottles)
Drink 2016-2030
Alc 15%

Luiano, Ottantuno 2010
18/20pts (93/100pts)
Brooding black fruits nose, with smoky oak and vanilla. Rich, bright, textured and fruity, yet a bit one-dimensional, with chewy tannins on the weighty finish. Good length.
Price: £32 Divine Importers (3,000 bottles)
Drink 2016-2025
Alc 13.5%

Ricasoli, Colledila 2010
18/20pts (93/100pts)
Raw, oaky, cherry nose, quite fragrant. Rich and concentrated, quite oaky with firm tannins. Assertive and structured, and needs time. Good length.
Price: £38.29 Fells, Raisin Wine (20,000 bottles)
Drink 2016-2025
Alc 14.5%

Vicchiomaggio, Vigna La Prima 2010
18/20pts (93/100pts)
Opulent cherry and cassis nose, vibrant fruit. Suave and succulent, concentrated and fleshy, lacks a little bite and flair but the sweet almost jammy fruit is balanced by quite good acidity. Long.
Price: £29 Hallgarten (9,000 bottles)
Drink 2015-2025
Alc 14.5%

Villa Calcinaia, Vigna Bastignano 2010
18/20pts (93/100pts)
Very ripe cherry and blackcurrant nose that is intense and oaky. Voluptuous and very concentrated, bold and assertive with hefty but ripe tannins. Spicy and complex, with fine acidity and length.
Price: £87.95 (magnum) Berry Bros & Rudd (800 bottles)
Drink 2016-2025
Alc 14.5%

Volpaia, Il Puro 2010
18/20pts (93/100pts)
Rich cherry nose, unusually opulent for Volpaia. Lean attack, sprightly but concentrated, with firm tannins and austerity on the mid-palate. But ample ripe fruit, fine acidity and lift on the very long finish.
Price: POA Vinexus (2,000 bottles)
Drink 2015-2025
Alc 13.5%

Casaloste, Don Vincenzo 2009

17.5/20pts (91/100pts)
Seductive black cherry nose, showing charm as well as richness. Concentrated but no blockbuster, svelte and discreet, this doesn’t strive to impress, but has tannic grip and fresh acidity on the long finish.
Price: £34.95 (2008) Jeroboams (4,000 bottles)
Drink 2014-2024
Alc 14%

Castello Fonterutoli 2010
17.5/20pts (91/100pts)
Lush blackberry nose, with stylish oak, but doesn’t shout Chianti. Rich and ripe, with acidity and tension, intense and bright, elegant and fine-tuned, but the expert winemaking dominates. Good length, poised finish.
Price: £35.99-£38.45 AG Wines, Swig, We Love Fine Wines (60,000 bottles)
Drink 2014-2022
Alc 14%

Fattoria di Lamole, Vigna Grospoli 2011

17.5/20pts (91/100pts)
Imposing but perfumed black cherry nose. Rich, broad and fleshy, concentrated and weighty, with considerable heft and power. Fine acidity and length.
Price: N/A UK www.lamole.com (1,500 bottles)
Drink 2015-2024
Alc 14%

Lilliano 2010
17.5/20pts (91/100pts)
Very ripe, elegant, cherry nose, discreetly oaked. Medium-bodied and fresh, with finesse and poise. Fine acidity gives persistence, and the finish shows red fruits and excellent balance. Good length.
Price: N/A UK www.lilliano.com (2,000 bottles)
Drink 2014-2024
Alc 14%

See Stephen Brook’s top picks of Chianti Classico Riserva 2010 here

  1. 1. Introduction
  2. 2. Stephen Brook's top 12 Gran Selezione wines
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