~ Hillside Vineyards at Poggio Scalette ~

“Producing wine is a peasant art, made up of patience and foresight of imagining the vineyard before planting the young vines and preparing for them a welcoming place, one where they will feel at home and live for many years, accompanied by the love, the care, and the patience of a special person: the grower-producer.”   ….Vittorio Fiore
Podere Poggio Scalette became an autonomous wine-producing estate in 1991 when noted wine consultant Vittorio Fiore and his wife Adriana Assjè di Marcorà acquired several plots of land and a rural building on the hill of Ruffoli, in the commune of Greve.   The vineyards lie on terraced slopes, called “Il Carbonaione” by the local peasants and were among the first vineyards planted immediately after World War I.  Today, at over 80 years of age, they are producing incredible grapes with intensity and character.
The estate is run by Adriana and her son Jurij,  while Vittorio casts only a watchful eye for oversight.  

~ Aging Cellars at Poggio Scalette ~

We’re reporting on the flagship wine of Podere Poggio Scalette, “Il Carbonaione” – a 100% Sangiovese produced from the local clone “Lamole”.   Like many of the 2010’s I’ve tasted, this one requires advanced decanting, but ideally, will benefit extended cellaring. 
At first glance, you are struck by the color here.  The wine is a deep, dark, purple, with almost blue tones throughout.  After double decanting for almost 2 hours, notes of savory herbs, black and blue fruits and floral notes emerge on the nose.  It’s very enticing and only offers a glimpse of what lies ahead.   On the palate, the wine is very precise, with wonderfully ripe black and blue fruit flavors. There is little complexity to flavors at this point, but the seduction of this wine lies in it’s tactile nature.  The wine is so smooth even at this young age and has almost perfect balance. There is nary a sensation of tannin, given the sheer size of the fruit and the acids to match.  It’s fresh and delicious.  This will easily be a 20 year wine if you have the means to cellar it.  It showcases the 2010 vintage beautifully.  93 points, about $50. 

~ Look at the color of this pure Sangiovese ~

Il Carbonaione is fermented in stainless steel and then in medium French oak tonneaux for 14 months before spending 6 months in bottle prior to release.  
A word on 2010 in Tuscany
I’ve had several Sangiovese based wines from Tuscany 2010 and thus far, they all seem to share the same overall character.  They are wines with wonderful fruit, set on a large structured frame, with floral aromatics, and lots of balancing acid and tannin.  Tannins, which are well masked by the sheer size of the fruit at this point.  They are cellar worthy wines and have not expressed themselves too boisterously at the moment.  Tignanello, Cepparello, Fontalloro, Torrione and now Il Carbonaione have all behaved very similarly.  While I recommend buying what you can, I also suggest setting these deep in your cellar for future enjoyment. 

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