Six of Chianti Classico's leading producers have united in launching a 'Super Chianti Classico' tag for wines which, they say, 'finally represent the tipicity of the terroir'.
Producers including Tuscany’s prominent Castello di Ama and Fattoria La Massa are hoping the new, if unofficial, designation will see a move away from Riserva wines and high-priced IGT Super-Tuscans, and a return to the limelight for Chianti Classico.
The philosophy behind the new tag is akin to that of Bordeaux’s first growths, the producers say, with particular emphasis on the winemaker and the terroir, while still adhering to the regulations governing Chianti Classico DOCG.
‘The idea is very simple,’ Francesco Ricasoli of Barone Ricasoli says. ‘Each of us believes that the most representative wine of our terroir is a highly selective Chianti Classico, which comes from the estates’ top vineyards and the best selected grapes.’
But in order to make a real breakthrough, the producers are hoping that premium estates like Paolo de Marchi’s Isole Olena and Castello di Rampolla will follow suit. ‘Then things will really start swinging,’ says Castello di Ama’s Marco Pallanti.
The three other participating producers are Castello di Fonterutoli, Fattoria Le Corti and Podere Il Palazzino.
Super Chianti Classico wines include Castello di Ama, Castello di Brolio, Castello di Fonterutoli, Don Tommaso (Fattoria Le Corti), Giorgio Primo (La Massa) and Grosso Sanese (Podere Il Palazzino) from the newly released 2002 vintage. They all contain a minimum of 85% Sangiovese.
Written by Michèle Shah 26 March 2003