Casa Emma Merlot and Chianti

The Casa Emma estate is a small, family-owned and operated artisanal winery located in the heart of the Chianti Classico appellation (in the township of Castellina in Chianti). Of its 34 hectares, 21 hectares are used for the cultivation of Sangiovese (with a few rows of native Tuscan grape varieties Malvasia Nera and Canaiolo). A 3-hectare prized growing site is devoted exclusively to the Merlot used in the winery’s Super Tuscan Soloìo.

As early as the fourteenth century, the “Classico” subzone of Chianti was renowned for its superior wines. The original townships of Chianti all lie at higher altitudes with respect to the outer subzones of the appellation. Cooler evening temperatures help the grapes to ripen more slowly by cooling the fruit at the end of the day. This allows the winemaker to pick later in the growing season when the grapes have achieved ideal ripeness. All of Casa Emma’s vineyards lie above 400 meters a.s.l.

Casa Emma’s Soloìo (literally solo io or “only me” in Italian) is made from 100% Merlot grapes grown in one of the winery’s most prized vineyard sites. One and a half years of gentle oxygenation in French oak bring out the lush, opulent fruit and chocolate flavors of this truly decadent wine. A great pairing for winter roasts and stews and a fantastic gift idea for “trophy wine” lovers. 2004 was an excellent vintage in Chianti Classico and this wine will drink well for the next 5-10 years.

Casa Emma’s Chianti Classico DOCG is made from the following blend: Sangiovese 90%, Canaiolo 5% e Malvasia Nera 5%. This classic expression of the appellation is intended for drinking right away: judicious aging in new wood allows for gentle oxygenation of the wine, thus helping the tannins to mellow and the fruit to show beautifully. A great wine for the Thanksgiving table, this Chianti Classico — with bright acidity and red fruit in the mouth — will pair well with a wide variety of dishes.

Casa Emma’s Chianti Classico Riserva is made using Sangiovese grapes, with smaller amounts of Malvasia Nera added. This long-lived wine spends 2 years in traditional large oak barrels before being bottled and will only get better with aging (drink now or over the next 5-10 years). The most “classic” of Casa Emma’s wines, this Chianti benefits greatly from the high altitude. The cooler evening temperatures are a key element in the winery’s ability to achieve Sangiovese with immense aging potential. This Chianti Riserva is one of our all-time favorites at Vino. A very collectible Chianti and a perfect pairing for steak and other grilled meats.

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