Italian tasting review

Guicciardini Strozzi Chianti 2003
72 points
12% A$19 one litre bottle

This was bought purely for the bottle, so we can stick a candle in it and pretend we are in an old-fashioned Italian cafe. I expected a thin poor wine, but it was quite dark and full (the 2003 vintage effect I guess), with some Brett, oxidation, and rather unpleasant acids. You’d need pretty distracting food to drink much of this.

Guerrieri Rizzardi “pojega” Valpolicella Superiore 2001
78 points.
12.5% A$25

Light colour, medium bodied, not unattractive wine. Simple. Not for keeping.

Frescabaldi Nipozzano Chianti Reserva 1998
83 points
12.5% A$30

This wine has seen better days. In spite of the decent vintage this wine lacks the stuff to handle the 8 years (and travel). Mind you it was bought of retail shelves (buying older imported wine off retail shelves in Australia is generally a mistake). Half a bottle was left over after dinner – says a lot.

PianCornello Brunello de Montalcino 2001
88 points

Compared to the previous wines this has greater structure, weight of fruit, and oak. The wine is noticeably fresher too, no oxidation, clean clear Sangiovese flavour. With this sort of tight structure and zippy acids I tend to think the wine will live for a long time.

Zilzie Reserve Sangiovese 2002
from King Valley, Victoria, Australia (for comparison)
67 points

Flat dull pruney flavours. Rather disgusting to drink when put against the Tuscan wines. I’m surprised I remember this as much fresher and fruiter (when younger of course).

Arnaldo-Caprai “Collepiano” Sangratino di Montefalco 2000
84 points
14% A$70

I was very impressed with these wines 11 years ago when staying in Todi, Umbria. Made from the Sangratino grape which gives bright dark wines with considerable fruit, with chewy grapey tannins. Compared to the other wines this is far more concentrated (extracted ?) with noticeable alcohol, bold acid, tannin and whopping amount of new oak. It’s bold impressive wine, seemingly only a couple of years old (not 6). For long aging. But now I really didn’t like it.

I suspect that now that Sangratino has been discovered and money is pouring in (the wines are very expensive now) winemakers are trying out all sorts of modern techniques to make even more impressive wines. Fine for getting attention at wineshows, not good for the dinner table.


2 thoughts on “Italian tasting review

  1. Pingback: Spanish wine tasting « Wine Reviews & Comments

  2. Ummm, 1998 was a poor vintage in Chianti and my experience with Nipozzano is to skip the poor vintages. The ’98 Nipozzano may have been okay for the first few years after release but wouldn’t likely age well. For my own part I have a few bottles of the ’97 and ’99 and fully expect them to go the distance.

    Now, I would recommend the 2004 or 2005 Nipozzano.


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