Chianti Classico Riserva 2013 Castello di Monsanto
When owner Fabrizio Bianchi purchased this ancient estate 1962 he began a transformation that continues to this day. The vineyards have all been revitalized and the winemaking is modern and up-to-date. He was one of the first to eliminate white grapes from his Chianti blend. The blend is 90% Sangiovese, 7% Canaiolo and 3% Colorino. Instead of large Slavonian casks the wine is aged for 18 months in French oak barriques. This 2013 was chosen as a Top 100 Wine for 2016 by Wine Spectator who also called it "Smart Buy" and scored it 91 points saying "Pure cherry takes center stage, framed by tar, earth, tobacco and mineral elements. Vivid and elegant, showing fine intensity and equilibrium, with a lingering aftertaste. Drink now through 2020." and James Suckling scored it 93 saying "Layered and pretty red with cherry and light orange undertones. Some dusty texture. Medium body, good acidity and a clean finish. A beautiful riserva with finesse and tension."
I was at the Monsanto estate a couple of weeks ago for a tasting and had this wine, among others. Terrific Chianti Classico! They have a passion for their wines, as do all of the CC winemakers. Had the 2011 as well, good comparison, and preview of what this 2013 will become.