Often times when I write about specific wines or wineries one of my readers inevitably contacts me and asks: “Why would so and so winery bother making a wine like that? What is the point?” My answer is always simple. “Because they can.”
This conversation came up recently while discussing today’s subject wine with a customer at a local wine shop. Whether it’s an obscure white or a non-conforming red, there’s always an air of why bother? Why not replant with more mainstream grapes or use the existing fruit to make a Riserva or more Classico? Well, because tradition is important and they can!
With an ancient Abbey as it’s centerpiece, Badia (Bah-DEE-uhh) a Coltibuono is a destination unto itself. Since 1846, the property has belonged to the Stucchi Prinetti family. Throughout the early 1900s the estate remained focused on agriculture until the 1950s when wine production became a major focus.
I’ve been a bit critical, at least lukewarm, of the 2013 vintage in Chianti Classico. Many of the wines have been angular, austere and lean. The worst have been tart and diluted. As a result, I was skeptical about Montebello but that skepticism waned to full blown joy once we began tasting.
The 2013 Badia a Coltibuono is a medium violet color in the glass. Plentiful aromas of chestnuts, flowers, cypress and crushed red fruits are very attractive. On the palate, the wine is medium to full bodied with loads of ripe fruit framed by cedar, tobacco, toasted spices and espresso. Owing to the wine’s unique blend, Montebello walks the line stylistically between modern and rustic. 95 points. Find this wine.
The 2013 is a blend of Mammolo, Ciliegiolo, Pugnitello, Colorino, Sanforte, Malvasia Nera, Canaiolo, Foglia Tonda and Sangiovese. Each variety is vinified and aged separately in small barrels before being blended.