It’s a short, winding, dusty strada bianca that leads from Vagliagli center to Radda in Chianti, but it’s a lovely ride for it’s untamed, serene landscapes that have seemingly remained unchanged for hundreds of years. The backroads of Chianti lead to many a treasure and just outside Radda lies the beautiful estate of Monteraponi. Although just a few minutes from the center of Radda, Monteraponi is isolated in natural beauty. Winemaker Michele Braganti sums it up nicely:
“Monteraponi is an independant ecosystem, it’s a village surrounded by the forest on all sides, like a monopole in France. The property is about 200 hectares stretching through a valley over passed by the Arbia river, with oak trees, and over 1,200 olive trees. Of the total area of land, only 10 hectares are vineyards and the rest semi-native and wild. There is a lake, where I go to fish from time by time…to relax.”
|~ In the center of this picture, just behind the power lines, lies the Vineyard Il Campitello, completely surrounded by forest ~|
When I last visited Monteraponi, in June of 2014, I was already keenly aware of the excellence of the wine coming from Il Campitello. In fact, it was one of the reasons I made the trip to Radda. I tasted two vintages of the wine that day, the 2011 from bottle and the 2012 from barrel. Both were expressive and impressive and so today, we’re re-visiting the 2011 which I have not enjoyed since late summer 2014.
|~ Alessandra drawing a barrel sample of 2012 Il Campitello. The sign reads: “Wine that will become Chianti Classico Riserva Il Campitello 2012 ~|
The 2011 Monteraponi “Il Campitello” Chianti Classico Riserva is simple spectacular. In the glass the wine is a deep ruby with lovely violet reflections. We decided not to decant this bottle. The aromas were captivating. Fresh flowers, spices, crushed wild cherry, tobacco and herb notes fill the room. I love smelling this almost as much as drinking it.
On the palate, the wine is pristine and pure. Ripe wild cherry and berry notes fill the mouth with dusty minerals, spice, leather and sweet tobacco notes that are harmonic. The soil in Il Campitello is galestro, so the vineyard takes on a marked powdery, shaley mineral note that I love. Wonderful freshness and balance round this wine out.
Il Campitello is 90% Sangiovese 8% Canaiolo and 2% Colorino. It’s classic in every sense and will be a staple in my cellar. It’s not always easy to find, but when you do, I would not hesitate to grab it. It’s not inexpensive, but it delivers. 95 points, about $45 in the current market. Bravissimo!
|~ Single Vineyard Sangiovese that bears the Winemaker’s Soul ~|
Buon fine Settimana!
April 29, 2016