I’ve written many times before that Paolo DiMarchi is but a humble gentleman and a maestro of Sangiovese. The depths of his knowledge seem limitless when you speak to him. He pays attention to the weather with a keen eye; which way is the wind blowing, how hot is it, how is the soil in the vineyard reacting to it’s outside influences. All of this plays a part in crafting amazing wines.
Recently we broke into the cellar to retrieve a slumbering example of DiMarchi’s efforts; the 1995 Isole e Olena Cepparello. There are many reviews on this site for Cepparello. It’s quintessential. Yet this recent tasting proves that even quintessential wines are mortal from time to time.
The 1995 was decanted for 60+ minutes and I immediately took some in my glass to witness it’s evolution both before and during dinner. Decanting helped produce aromas, but a significant sediment was also removed. Although deeper red in the decanter, in the glass the wine is a muted ruby with lots of brick and orange reflections developing. There are pronounced aromas of bottle aged Sangiovese; autumn leaves, mushroom, mulch, worn leather and dried cherries. Complex, but portraying a sense of tiredness.
On the palate, not as complex. Warm, dried cherry, spices, and turned earth complete the package with acids and tannins mellowed and in check. Like a comfortable old bomber jacket, many may love this, but me? While I love the nuances of age, I enjoy more vitality to the fruit. This one could show a bit more for my taste. That’s not really a knock since this is a 20 year old wine. However, if you’re holding these in your cellar, it’s time to drink up. 89 points. Current vintages sell for $50-$70 so shop around.
|~ 20 year old Cepparello: 100% Sangiovese from Barberino Val d’Elsa in Chianti ~