~ Francesco & Filippo Mazzei ~

The Mazzei family has been making wine for generations in Tuscany.  As the story relates, it was Ser Lapo Mazzei who recorded the first ever use of the word “Chianti” in written form.  In fact, the label on bottles of Ser Lapo tell the story:  “On this 16th day of December 1398,  3 floria, 26 soldi and 8 denari shall be given to Piero di Tino di Riccio for 6 barrels of Chianti wine, the aforementioned we pay by written letter of Ser Lapo Mazzei.” 
1398.   The Ming Dynasty was thriving. The Teutonic Knights conquered Gotland and set their sights on Lithuania.  Janus succeeds James, I as King of Cyprus.  And thankfully for all of us, the Mazzei’s made wine.
~ Il Giardino nella Azienda Mazzei ~
My recent experiences with the Chianti Classico of Mazzei have been somewhat mixed. While I wasn’t too enamored with the 2010, the 2013 that was tasted during the Gran Selezione showed itself much better.  

Today we’re focusing on the 2011.   The Mazzei Chianti Classico 2011 is a deep ruby in the glass – in fact, approaching garnet.  We did not decant the wine but it sat open for about an hour before dinner.  

On the nose, the wine’s aromas develop nicely.  There’s a savory component to the cherry and bright tobacco leaf notes that’s very enticing but hard to pinpoint.  Juicy, bright flavors emerge on the palate with cured olive, juicy tart cherry, mushroom and minerals so typical of Sangiovese grown in Castellina.   

While the track record here may be somewhat spotty, if readers use this review and the data points linked above, you’ll be able to buy confidently.  The value is certainly there around $15.  88 points.

~ The Mazzei Chianti Classico is 90% Sangiovese with the balance to Malvasia Nero, Colorino and Merlot. The wine spends 12 months aging in French barrique after stainless steel vinification ~
Buon fine settimana!

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