Those of you who have shopped at Vino over the years know that we love traditional-style Sangiovese and that Villa di Vetrice is one of our favorite producers of this quintessentially Italian grape.
Long overshadowed by its sister appellation, Chianti Classico, Chianti Rufina is now emerging as the top subzone for the production of Sangiovese. As one Italian wine writer put it recently, Chianti Rufina is “Chianti in montagna” or “mountain Chianti.” In other words, Chianti Rufina is the highest point in the entire Chianti appellation. Altitudes there allow winemakers to create wines with remarkable aging potential, wines that will retain their freshness (thanks to cool summer evenings) for decades.
Villa di Vetrice vinifies their Chianti in a 100% traditional style: 100% Sangiovese fermented and aged in large, old oak barrels. We’ve tasted their Sangiovese going back to 1979 and have always been impressed with the wines’ beautiful fruit, bright acidity, and balanced tannin.
The 1997 harvest has widely been hailed as one the greatest Tuscan vintages in recent memory and the 1997 Chianti Rufina by Villa di Vetrice is drinking great right now.
Charles Scicolone, our wine director emeritus, often points to this wine as one of his favorite expressions of Sangiovese. A great pairing for steak.