~ The Ancient Badia a Passignano Abbey ~
The ancient monastery, Badia a Passignano sits in the center of pristinely manicured vineyards – surrounded  like some sort of oasis.  However, that didn’t stop the Antinori family from acquiring the vineyards in 1987 and since then,  they have consistently produced one of the best Chianti Classico Riservas from the fruit.  
Recently, we uncorked a bottle from the depths of the cellar that I had carried back with me from a small enoteca in Castiglione del Lago.  29 Euro says the price sticker on the bottle. Oh, how I wish!    

The 2001 Antinori Badia a Passignano Chianti Classico Riserva has developed into a stately, aristocratic women.  14 years of bottle bouquet have resulted in magical aromas of warm cherry compote, chocolate, sweet pipe tobacco, fennel and red clay.  On the palate, the wine is compelling.  It’s delicious.  Flavors follow the nose with beautiful harmony and wonderful balance.  The interwoven flavors of mocha, fruit, spice, anise and espresso bean are seamless.  I wish I had shipped home a case.  96 points.  Current vintages sell for about $50-$60 depending upon the market.

~ The Abbey’s Tower is pictured on the new label.  Through 1997, this wine had a label reminiscent of Italian Lira.  It was funky, but I liked it ~


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