~  Rows of Sangiovese descend from Villa Cerna ~

The Villa Cerna estate was established sometime around the year 1000AD, as part of the “Abbey of the Holy Savior” near the town of Abbadia Isola.  Today the estate sits in the heart of the Chianti Classico region, in the commune of Castellina in Chianti.  The Cecchi family has owned the estate since the 1960’s and winemaker Andrea Cecchi drives the reins of production.  

While brothers Andrea and Cesare Cecchi lead the family winery into the 21st century, they are re-investing countless energies and finances into their properties and the resulting “renaissance” if you will,  is noticeable.   

~ The new aging cellars at Villa Cerna are part of the modernization of the estate ~

I’ve been writing about the estate with praise since early 2014 and today we’re focusing on the latest release from the winery, it’s 2013 Chianti Classico Riserva.

The Villa Cerna Riserva is produced from the strictest selection of hand harvested grapes and comprised of 90% Sangiovese and 10% Colorino.  

We decanted the wine for 30 minutes before dinner, but take note here, it needs more time than that at this young age. What was first a wine that appeared slightly lean and astringent, blossomed significantly after being open for about an hour.  Plan accordingly. 

On the nose, the wine displays everything I love about a classically made Riserva. It’s replete with dried floral notes, crushed cherry, ash/tobacco and fennel notes.  On the palate, the wine displays a medium to full bodied core of ripe cherry and spice notes with new leather, and hints of wood.  This still needs some integration and while the promise is there, this isn’t yet at the level of the 2010 and 2011.   Aged 14 months in barrique and at least 10 months in bottle before release.  The more austere and structured nature of the 2013 vintage is obvious at this stage. I think the future is bright for this wine, but it does not have the forward nature of the aforementioned 2010 and 2011.  90 points and good value around $25.  Disclosure: This bottle was a pre-release sample provided by the producer.

~ Another small sign of the Villa Cerna “renewal” ;  I love the newly designed label.  Note the color of the wine; no doubt impacted by the inclusion of Colorino. ~


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