Value from 2016: Rocca di Castagnoli
by John Fodera
June 28, 2019
~ In this image you can see the entrance to the new cellar partially built into the hillside ~
“Touching the land, admiring the beauty of a vineyard, experiencing the harvest, recognizing the scent of a grape, tasting its typicality… We want to invite a unique experience from our land.”
The wine estate Rocca di Castagnoli was first established by the current owners in 1981 after previously being part of the Ricasoli estate. Rocca is another name for Fort or Castle in Italian and the Castagnoli Fortress dominated it’s surrounding hamlet in this little corner of Gaiole in Chianti. Since 1981, the current owners have acquired land in Sicily and Maremma and now the estate is part of an overall company called Tenute Cali.
The Rocca di Castagnoli farm covers about 850 hectares with elevation profiles ranging from 860 meters to 380 meters. There are 92 hectares of vines, predominantly Sangiovese, while the balance is devoted to Cabernet, Merlot and other native varietals.
~ The new barrique cellar which rests below the old Rocca. The new portion of the cellar, constructed in 1981, houses the winemaking capacity ~
Today we’re looking at one of the newest releases from the estate. Hailing from vineyards throughout the property, the “Rocca” Chianti Classico is sourced from vines that vary in age from 4-35 years. Comprised of 90% Sangiovese, the balance is relegated to Canaiolo and Colorino. Aging involves one year in large botte and 3 months in stainless steel before 6 months of bottle aging prior to release. The result is a balanced, easy drinking Chianti Classico.
The 2016 Rocca di Castagnoli Chianti Classico is a deep ruby color. The vibrancy of the color extends into the aromas of the wine. Fresh, high toned floral notes are pronounced with sage and cypress notes also backing the core of cherry aromas. On the palate, the wine is fresh and approachable. Medium bodied, it’s lithe and juicy. A solid core of cherry flavors is pleasing yet not overly complex. This is about freshness and simplicity but that’s not to suggest a negative connotation. This is an every day wine. It’s meant to be an easy foil for many foods and it’s meant to be consumed in quantity. With over 350,000 bottles produced it should be easy to find. Nice value. 87 points. About $15 at most. Shop around. Find this wine.
~ Sporting a new label for 2016, this Chianti Classico also sports high toned floral aromas that are appealing and attractive ~
Stay tuned for more values in the coming weeks; locally sourced and sourced from my time in Italy.