Aged Sangivoese Tasting Notes

Siepi vs. Percarlo - a vintage showdown

 


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1997

Ah, the golden year. This was one of those years when critics competed with each other for the most over the top hyperbole. The best ever, breath taking, monumental, back up the truck, mortgage the house, sell your wife or husband! Yes, the wines were awfully appealing on release and some have aged well, but to make these extreme statements strikes me as odd at best and downright silly at worst in light of so many other fine vintages. How were the wines?

First off, they were oaky. This was the peak of Italy’s love affair with new barrique and given the opulence of the fruit, it’s not surprising to see that many producers got carried away here. With the Percarlo there wasn’t that much more to be discerned, it’s a wine still wrapped up in a tight veil of assertive oakiness, and that is not a good sign. It remains fresh, aromatic and painful on the palate. The Siepi on the other hand showed its oak, but revealed much more with herbal, spicy aromas and fruit that was just beginning to dry out, showing some pruney characteristics as well.

Closer than the 1995 but advantage still goes to Siepi!
 

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Comments

  • Snooth User: lawdown
    87975 3

    Surely, Biondi-Santi Brunellos, first produced in the late 19th Century and still drinkable from that period, are worth a mention when discussing the ability of sangiovese wines to age.

    Mar 15, 2012 at 1:52 PM


  • Snooth User: Alikhan
    213662 20

    Gregory, try the older Montevertine Le Pergole Torte. For me the real guardian of the holy grail Sangiovese in Chianti and the only one who still uses 100% Sangiovese grapes for his wines. Nothing else. No Blends, No Bullshit. That is why he has stopped using the Chianti Label and calls his wines just Rosso (Red), but they remain mind-blowing for Sangiovese lovers and are quite pricey but worth every penny. Regards from Hamburg, Germany, Imtiaz Alikhan

    Mar 15, 2012 at 2:06 PM


  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 211,226

    Hi lawdown, Yes Biondi Santi is important in Brunello and a very fine wine, but I try to focus on wines I might buy and that my readers might buy. I tend not to buy wines over $100 a bottle, and many of my reader think even that is insanity.

    Hi Imtiaz,
    Thanks for the note, but you are preaching tothe choir my friend! Check out my last vertical with Montevertine here: http://www.snooth.com/articles/tast...

    And if you like Montevertine, check out Poggio di Sotto. Brunello that is usually just under $100 a bottle over here, but notably less in Italy and cut from much the same cloth.

    Mar 15, 2012 at 2:27 PM


  • Snooth User: Gavilan Vineyards
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    517320 40

    Down here in Argentina we have very little Sangiovese plants left. They are considered common grapes. Go figure. Last weekend I was looking at a vineyard for sale of a friend and he has 8ha of Sangiovese. They got hit early in the year with hail so he has very very little hanging but what is still there is exceptional in quality.
    So I thought, well, lets make at least a barrel of Sangiovese. Not that it has 'aged' yet, it has not even started the fermentation. We prolonged the skin contact without fermenting by cooling the crush. So tonight the coolers come out and we will start fermenting.
    Once can only hope it will produce an excellent wine. If that is the case, I will graft one hectare in our vineyards to Sangiovese.

    Mar 15, 2012 at 4:39 PM


  • Snooth User: lawdown
    87975 3

    The issue is not which Sangiovese we would prefer to buy for the price, the issue -- as defined by the author -- was simply can Sangiovese wines age.

    Mar 15, 2012 at 9:03 PM


  • Snooth User: Villa Ragazzi
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    973965 51

    This may be less relevant to your discussion, which is focused entirely on Italian wines, but I can attest that at least two Napa Valley Sangioveses age very well -- Villa Ragazzi and La Sirena -- as noted in this blog entry on a recent tasting of the 1998 vintage: http://www.villaragazziwine.com/1/c...

    Mar 16, 2012 at 6:30 PM


  • Snooth User: Wisequeen Donna Jackson
    Hand of Snooth
    1062644 304

    I think if youre a lover of sangio then I suggest you include Michele Satta 100% sangiovese Cavaliere it will stand up well in that company. nothing wrong with bias we all have our favourites. I have reviewed Sattas pioneer IGT wines over years and hes a good sangio blender. Siepi is not an easy ride, it can be at times what the Italians call bisbetica -- difficult

    Apr 05, 2012 at 1:45 PM


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