~ Vigneti on the Sette Ponti Estate ~
Sette Ponti – named for the number of bridges one crosses on the road leading to the estate – produces two significant red wines,  Oreno and Crognolo.   The latter, named in honor of the Cornus bush which are abundant on the estate,  is a stylish, suave,  Sangiovese.  Today, we’re looking at the newest release from Sette Ponti,  the 2013 Crognolo.

The vineyards that give the fruit for Crognolo were planted in 1988 and have wonderful southerly exposure at an altitude of approximately 250 meters.  The vineyard is sand and clay and planted to a hearty density of almost 7,000 plants per hectare.  The vines struggle to find nutrients in the harder clay and the resulting fruit they bear is rich and complex.  Vinified in stainless steel and then refined in French barrique of varying age,  Crognolo is typically aged for about 18 months in barrel and another 6 months in bottle prior to release. 

I’ve written before about Crognolo not being the most typical of Sangiovese, and this current tasting bears that out.  The 2013 Crognolo is almost entirely Sangiovese, but does contain unspecified amounts of Merlot and Cabernet.  When you see the color of the wine,  there is little doubt about the inclusion of foreign varietals.  

On the nose, the wine is expressive with notes of mocha, cherry, vanilla and spices.  I once described Crognolo’s sibling Oreno as being “lavishly oaked” and the same adjective applies here.  On the palate, the wine is juicy, lively and round with fleshy cherry flavors punctuated by spice, toast and caramel.  Roasted espresso bean emerges on the finish.  This wine is well made, no question, but pushes the stylistic limits for Sangiovese. I suspect the inclusion of the Merlot and Cabernet is higher here than in previous vintages, though I can’t know that for sure and I didn’t enjoy this as much as I did the 2012.  91 points about $28. 

~ The 2013 was served alongside a mixed grill of lamb, wild boar and veal chops ~


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