Fontalloro should be in your cellar. If you love Sangiovese, Fontalloro 2015 should be in your cellar.
Felsina farms organically and holds some of the oldest vineyards in the Chianti Classico zone. Since 1966, the Poggiali family, owners of the estate, have been partnering with Franco Bernabei. It’s not a relationship that Bernabei takes for granted. He has told me that his decision to take on a project isn’t taken lightly. As the chain smoking, blazer wearing winemaker says: “Tuscany offered immense possibilities for an adventurous young winemaker and fertile terrain for testing new concepts.” Terrain figures high in Bernabei’s winemaking philospohy. “If I don’t find the right terrain,” he says, “I can’t embrace a cause.”
Lucky for all of us that he has, and continues to embrace Felsina. I’m often asked why Fontalloro isn’t a Gran Selezione. The answer is simple. The vineyard sources for the wine straddle the Chianti Classico and Chianti Colli Senesi production areas. As a resul, the Gran Selezione designation isn’t permitted. But it matters not. Those in the know, know.
Comprised of 100% Sangiovese, Fontalloro is vinified in stainless steel tanks and then aged in a combination of new and used French Barrique for 18-22 months depending upon the vintage. After bottling, the wine is held up to an additional year prior to release.
The 2015 Felsina Fontalloro is utterly amazing. It pours an ultra dark, garnet red with a violet rim and right from the start it seemed poised to impress. The aromas from the wine are spellbinding. Huge black cherry, pipe tobacco, coffee bean, dark cocoa and licorice are laser focused and impressive. On the palate, the wine impresses for it’s purity, structure and persistence. Medium to full bodied flavors of wild cherry take center stage with dark chocolate covered cherry, crushed terra cotta and Christmas baking spices adding complexity. Graham cracker on the finish. Balanced deftly between acids, tannins and fruit hints at an ideal equation for cellaring. The problem is, it’s so delicious now so if you’ve got a few, try one! So impressed. 97 points. Find this wine.
There are plenty of other data points on the site for Fontalloro. See the links below if you’re sitting on other vintages.
Enjoy and Salute!