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Wine Spectator School


Course: Tuscany

Class 2: Chianti and Montalcino


CHIANTI OVERVIEW

History
  • 1880s - traditional Chianti blend of thirteen grapes formulated, including:
        Reds: Sangiovese, Canaiolo, Mammolo, Colorino, Ciliegiolo
        Whites: Malvasia and Trebbiano
  • 1970s - poor quality wines resulting from:
        Mass production
        Poor clones
        Massive vineyard expansion beyond the original Chianti sites (which now account for only about 40% of modern-day Chianti)
        Government subsidies
        Increased proportion of easy-to-grow but low-quality Malvasia/Trebbiano in blend
  • Past 20 years' attention to the vineyard dramatically improves wine quality
Key Areas, Key Wines
  • Wine labeled "Chianti" can come from anywhere in Chianti
  • Weightier blends of same varieties from Chianti Classico, Chianti Rufina, Colli Fiorentini
  • Riservas: fuller-bodied wines aged for a minimum of two years, three months
Chianti DOCGs
  • The entire zone of Chianti may use...

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