This is a good wine at a fair price. Lightly coloured in the glass, the 2017 vintage of Antinori’s Peppoli Chianti Classico has typical sangiovese aromas of sour cherry and licorice. The palate has firm tannins and good length. This wine can be approached now, but will suit a couple of years in the cellar. Rating: Good. Abv: 13.5%. Price: $27. Website: https://www.antinori.it/en/. Reviewed: October 2019.
This is a well presented, dry rosé from Yalumba in South Australia. Its aroma reminds of florals and twigs. The palate is dry, crisp and pleasant, and its alcohol low at 11.5%. Ready to drink now, this rosé suits summer drinking and is sound value at $15. Rating: Acceptable to Good. Abv: 11.5%. Price: $15. Website: yalumba.com. Source: Sample.
Villa Antinori’s Toscano Rosso continues to be a great value wine. The 2015 vintage is quite the blend, featuring sangiovese, cabernet sauvignon, petit verdot, syrah and merlot. Yet it retains a sense of place, and is identifiably Italian in style in the glass. The 2015 vintage is deeply coloured in the glass, with aromas of earth, blackcurrant and cedar. The palate is savoury and has good balance and length. Rating: Good to Very Good. Abv: 13.5%. Price: $20+. Website: www.antinori.it.
The Mr. Mick rosé is made by Tim Adams in the Clare Valley and from the unlikely combination of sangiovese, tempranillo and mourvèdre. In the glass, it has a pink/purple hue, fresh acidity and is very fruity and finishes dry. Overall, this is a pleasant rosé that is low in alcohol and keenly priced. Rating: Good. Abv: 10.5%. Price: <$15. Website: mrmick.com.au.
From the 2012 vintage, this is a very good expression of sangiovese from Tenuta Buon Tempo in Brunello di Montalcino in Tuscany. A medium intensity ruby colour in the glass, the wine opens to aromas of chocolate, earth, licorice and dried cranberries. The palate is full bodied, with quite firm but very fine tannins, high acidity and a long, earthy and savoury finish. This wine can be approached now (a good decant is recommended) or cellared and approached over the next decade. Rating: Very Good. Abv: 14.5%. Price: $80.
Antinori’s Villa Antinori (red) is a very reliable wine, although I haven’t tasted it for years – the last vintage I reviewed was the 2006 vintage back in 2010. It was an interesting wine to taste blind. Neither quite fitting the profile of a Chianti Classico (the acidity and tannins were not firm enough) nor Bordeaux (the colour was insufficiently saturated and the tannins were not “cabernet” enough), it nonetheless had some characters of both. It proved to be a Toscana IGT, which in 2014 for Antinori’s Villa Antinori, is a sangiovese dominant blend, supplemented by cabernet sauvignon, merlot and syrah. The wine opens to restrained and savoury aromas with meaty, animal overtones. More or less medium bodied, there’s a smokey, struck match character from the oak and a general easy going character. Overall, this is a balanced, pleasant wine that finishes well. Rating: Good. Abv: 13%. Price: $20s.
This is a sangiovese based rosé from organic producer Pig in the House in Cowra. It has restrained and savoury aromatics of raspberry and strawberry. Old oak influences the palate, which has a light to medium body, mid range length, spice and raspberry on the finish and a loose knit but pleasant expression. Rating: Acceptable to Good. Abv: 12.5%. Price: $25. Source: Sample.
This d’Arenberg label is typically odd, but the wine inside is good. A lesser seen blend of sangiovese (73%) and shiraz (27%), this rosé presents as “cellophane pink” in colour. Its aromas are more usual and remind of red grapefruit. The palate has fresh acidity, a hint of spritz, a medium to full body and a dry impression (Alc: 12.1%, Region: McLaren Vale, Rating: Good, Drink: now, Tasted: August, 2017, Source: Sample)
Other vintages reviewed:
Here are a couple of local sangiovese wines tasted recently. Sangiovese is a variety that I don’t think has yet produced a great wine in Australia. But these two examples are very good.
Hollick Hollaia Sangiovese Cabernet Sauvignon 2004, Wrattonbully
This wine was bottled under screwcap and has matured wonderfully in the cellar. A blend of sangiovese and cabernet sauvignon from Wrattonbully on the border between South Australia and Victoria, the wine in the glass is claret like in impression. The palate is medium bodied with long length, and in its prime drinking window. A slight overlay of mint reminds of its local origins. This is a serious effort that will impress, and may well be the best Australian interpretation of this blend that I have tasted. (Region: Wrattonbully, South Australia, Rating: Very Good, Drink: now to 2020, Tasted: Feb, 2017)
Other vintages reviewed:
Reillys Sangiovese 2013, Clare Valley
A full bodied interpretation of sangiovese, with notes of chocolate, bitumen and sour cherries. Nice length and fresh acidity make for well balanced drinking. A good by the glass choice. (Region: Clare Valley, South Australia, Rating: Good, Drink: now to 2025, Tasted: Mar, 2017)
Other vintages reviewed: