~ Barriques in the Capannelle Cellars ~

The Capannelle Estate lies among  the hills of Gaiole, in northern Chianti Classico and extends for approximately 20 hectares, 16 of which are under vine.  Capannelle produces three red wines from native varieties and a delicious Chardonnay; both of which we profiled earlier this year.

One of Gaiole’s most notable producers, Capanelle is a v irtual baby on the Italian wine scene. The estate traces its wine producing roots to 1974 when Roman businessman Raffaelle Rosetti purchased the estate and farmhouse after visiting Tuscany on holiday.  Today, the estate and its 16 hectares of vineyards produce about 80,000 bottles of wine annually, hosts visitors in its many borgi and also produces various agricultural delicacies.

The team at Capannelle is highly technical and that effort is directed at the wines.  Stainless steel, for it’s inert, sterile and neutral character, are used exclusively in vinifying the estate wines.  Technicians in long, white lab coats monitor temperature, humidity, sugar levels, alcohol levels and tweak what ends up as the ultimate blend for a given wine.  It’s borderline obsessive, yet the results don’t lie.  Quality is on the rise here and is no more evident than in the subject of today’s wine.  

~ Braised Fennel Sausage with White Beans and Sage ~

The 2009 Capannelle Solare is a special wine indeed.  We decanted 1/2 the bottle about 45 minutes before dinner and allowed the remainder to remain.  In the glass, the wine is a deep ruby with luminescent violet reflections.  The aromas are classic.  There’s plenty of crushed berry, fennel, flowers and spice notes on the nose, with a soft vanilla like sandalwood note emerging later.  

On the palate, the wine is fresh and vibrant with a pretty core of ripe cherry, cured meat, dried herb and anise character.  This is fresh, and shows no overripe signs from the warm vintage year.  Balanced and long, with soft moderately structured tannins that melted away with the sausage and the tiny pork meatballs pictured below. 
Solare is predominantly Sangiovese with a small addition of Malvasia Nera. The wine is aged in French barrique for 12-14 months and then in bottle for 6-12 months prior to release.  An authentic expression of Sangiovese and priced fairly for the quality.  91 points, about $35-$40.  Disclosure: This bottle was an importer provided sample.

~ The 2009 Solare displays lovely high toned aromatics ~

Buon settimana!

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