Brancaia Chianti Classico DOCG 2013

Brancaia Chianti Classico DOCG 2013
£22.50 / bottle£256.50 / case (12 bottles)

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Country: Italy
Grapes: Sangiovese
Region: Tuscany
Style: Smooth Elegant Reds
Wine Types: Red Wines
Drink: Now to 2022
Unoaked
Cork
ABV: 13%

Tasting Notes


The story

The story of how the Brancaia winery was redeveloped is a dream for many; Swiss couple Brigitte and Bruno Widmer fell in love with the abandoned Brancaia estate (Castellina in Chianti) in 1981 and purchased it. Only two years later, Brancaia made the first rank in an important Chianti Classico tasting and then rapidly gained international recognition. Since 1998 Barbara Widmer, oenologist and daughter of the founders, has been responsible for the winemaking as well as for the vineyards on the now three estates - under the consultancy of oenologist Carlo Ferrini.
 
Brancaia's philosophy: "...All of our wines have to meet the highest quality standards… The principle that drives us every day: Only with first-class grapes can you produce a top product. It takes great respect for nature to achieve this goal. To put this into practice every year in the best possible way, we invest about 450 man hours per hectare with an average yield of 5,500 kg per hectare – quality matters to us more than quantity.


The wine


I had thought for a while that our portfolio of classic wines needed a Chianti but I had struggled to find one good enough - and reasonably priced – until now.

Classico means that this wine comes from the hilly historic centre of the Chianti wine region, the area most suited to vine growing. Simple Chianti is likely to be more fruit-forward and as is usually the case very easy to drink. This wine is much more elegant, a smooth and classy bottle of wine to be savoured rather than glugged.

This wine is produced 98% from Sangiovese and 2% from a more obscure Italian grape, Canaiolo, which brings perfume and softens the Sangiovese a little. Unlike many Chiantis this wine has not been oak aged and so it is much more delicate and not at all rustic like some. It has the typical Chianti Classico profile, red fruits like sour cherry, redcurrant with violets and savoury notes on the nose and palate - but without vanilla flavours which come usually from oak. The initial sharp red fruit hit melts into a mouth-filling and mouth-watering sensation leaving you wanting more. Delicious.

The wine may need time to open up so I recommend that you decant this wine or pour from a height to aerate the wine - your patience will be rewarded. I tasted a bottle over three days - using a wine pump to preserve it in between - and it seemed to get better each time I opened it. A beautiful, very elegant wine.

Food Pairing

This is a wine best consumed with food. Recommended to drink with lamb, game, duck, goose, steak and other red meats, and tomato-based dishes - think Italian!

Producer's Notes

Brancaia Chianti Classico shows our passion for this territory and the real character of the Sangiovese grape. This wine matures for 12 months in stainless steel tanks. It has seducing notes of ripe fruit, a lovely acidity and it offers you a lot of drinking pleasure.

Awards

Tre Bicchieri     Gambero Rosso

89 points     Robert Parker

"Here's a delicious wine that gives you no room for complaints. The 2013 Chianti Classico is a balanced and fruit-forward red wine to pair with spicy sausage or barbecued chicken. There is good acidity here and the wine offers moderate intensity. In fact, I would have expected more aromatic definition, given the high quality of the vintage. Perhaps Brancaia moved its best fruit up the line to the more expensive wines in this portfolio. There's a touch of sour cherry on the close.

Barbara Widmer's Brancaia offers a stunning set of new releases with wines from some of the best recent vintages including 2010 and 2013. If you are a Brancaia fan, as am I, you should not miss these wines."

17 points     Jancis Robinson MW   Mar 2015
"Cask sample. Just mid ruby. Cool, fragrant, earthy Sangiovese nose. A little tight still and just medium bodied but well balanced and extremely appealing. Wonderful, fine tannins on the finish."

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