“Every so often a story comes along without a beginning and an end. This is the story of a visionary family, an uncontaminated terroir, and a shared passion for the world of wine.”
Castello di Monsanto has a rich, storied history. The beating heart of this iconic property are Fabrizio and Laura Bianchi. For 60 years, they have exalted and preserved their vision for the estate.
Castello di Monsanto lies in the heart of Chianti Classico, in the sub-zone of San Donato in Poggio. One of the largest growing areas for Sangiovese between Siena and Firenze, San Donato in Poggio is a sort of island. The vineyards here are surrounded by woods, olive groves and other arable lands. This natural barrier of topography provides protection from the harshest weather.
Having been established in 1962, this year Castello di Monsanto celebrates its 60th birthday!
The subject of this article is the “renegade” Sangioveto Grosso. The wine comes from a single vineyard called “Scanni” that was planted in 1968. Why renegade? When the vineyard was planted, the laws of Chianti Classico mandated that different varietals must be planted together within the same vineyard. The Bianchi’s ignored this requirement and planted only Sangiovese Grosso in the Scanni vineyard.
This pioneering spirit continues today and as a result, the wine is labeled as an “IGT” and bottled using a Burgundy shaped bottle. The first vintage produced was 1974.
The 2016 Castello di Monsanto Sangioveto Grosso is 100% Sangiovese. In the glass the wine is a deep ruby to violet color with long, sultry legs. This portends exactly what you’d expect; a full bodied viscous wine. The aromas from the glass are intense with red cherry, turned warm clay, tobacco leaf and toasted spices. On the palate, the wine is fresh and lively with sapid cherry flavors, fresh herbs and a long juicy fennel finish. This is almost atypical for the 2016 vintage in that it reminds me more of some 2015 Brunello I’ve had. Along with Il Poggio Gran Selezione, Monsanto has two amazing Sangiovese wines in 2016. 95 points. Find this wine & Support Tuscan Vines.