nav
 
TOP NINE TUSCAN WINES UNDER $100.

1. Chianti Classico Giorgio Primo Fattoria La Massa

Giampaolo names the wine Giorgio Primo after his grandfather. His young son is also Giorgio. After the 2002 vintage, the wine became Giorgio Primo IGT and no longer Chianti Classico docg Giorgio Primo. Im not big on ratings or scores but if you are It has won the highest awards including nine consecutive 3 glass awards from Gambero Rosso. Chianti Classico docg Giorgio Primo is a marvellous blend of two parts Sangiovese and one part Merlot grapes grown on the estate. Giampaolo Motta’s flagship wine is not for amateurs. it is a serious wine that comes with a serious pricetag. This extraordinary wine explodes with fruit on the nose and palette. Cherry, earth notes, spice and hint of vanilla. SAQ-Balthazard 2002 75$

2. Cepparello- Isole e Olena 100% Sangiovese 2004
Cepparello means “small plant trunk” referring to the height of the vines that grow in the magnificent Chianti Classico zone. They are planted on the sun kissed southwest facing rolling hills in Barberino Val d’Elsa. Paolo de Marchi is a magician. He is the director of the estate and along with consulting oenologist Donato Lanati they transform the sangiovese grape into one of the most seductive and elegant wines in all of Tuscany. Tremendous dark cherry notes are present on the palette. The flavour parade continues with vanilla and cedar notes. The finish is as long as my washing machine’s rinse cycle. This wine is a touch austere in its youth but with a couple of years of cellaring, it apologizes and explains why its my #2 wine. Enjoy. SAQ Montalvin 67$

3. Dromos 2004
Poggio Verrano This is a relative newcomer to the top wine circles in Tuscany. It is the fruits of labour of Francesco Bolla. For decades his family were giants in winemaking in the Veneto region. In the early 1980’s nearly a million cases of Soave were imported yearly to the US. They sold to beverage giants Brown-Foreman and Francesco headed south to Tuscany’s Maremma region. Maremma is hotter than northern Tuscany and allows other grapes like Alicante and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes to fully ripen. The cool breeze from the sea has a moderating effect on the climate and the result is full bodied elegant wines that are capable of long aging.

This modern wine has hints of blackberries, cassis and black cherries with incredible elegant spice. Dromos is a blend of Sangiovese grape with Alicante, Cabernet, Cabernet Franc and Merlot. Of all the wine in my top 9, The Alicante and Cabernet Franc get the wine-oscar for supporting role. Their role as complimentary or supporting grape make the sangiovese shine and add an unmistakeable dimension to the wine.

4. Fontalloro 2003 Felsina
This wine is like an undervalued stock. Georgeous Sangiovese from Felsina. Fontalloro means “golden slope”. Can easily sell for 10 dollars more. Great with Tagliolini with wild mushrooms. Ripe red cherry, mineral and earthy notes give way to a long and harmonious finish. Univins 44.75$ SAQ

5. Siepi 2004 Fonterutoli
A 50-50 Merlot/Sangiovese blend that is a Tuscan fruit grenade. Open and decant for 10 years then stand back for the explosion. SAQ -90$ Dandurand.

6. Tignanello 2004 Marchese Antinori
What can be said about Tig that hasn’t already. Consistent top shelf quality for two decades. Sangiovese and Cabernet Blend, the 2004 has a little more balanced and elegant fruit than the 03. Stock up.Tasted at Vinitaly 07. SAQ-Maxxium, 99$

7. Sesa 2003 Poggio Foco

Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Alicante in this Maremma blend. Once again Winemaker Carlo Ferrini’s Midas Touch. Gobs of ripe fruit and layers of complex mocha, vanilla and dark berries. 36$ SAQ Vins Balthazard

8. Brunello di Montalcino 2001 Fuligni
Top Brunello from a top producer. P.import.8. Vino Nobile di Montepulciano Vigna Asinone Poliziano 2003.
Made from Prugnolo Gentile grape a Sangiovese clone grown west of the village of Montepulciano on the south eastern side of Tuscany. Montepulciano is located about 110km from Florence and about 65 km from Siena. Dark , Smoky and a touch more full bodied than the elegant sangioveses mentioned above that see french barriques. Try with a rib roast but let wine breathe for an hour. The 2003 vintage has a lot of alcohol and fades into the background after time in a decanter. SAQ 56$ Roucet

9. Rosso di Montalcino Cantina di Montalcino 2005
This wine is a viticultural snapshot of the future of great wine from this co-op winery. Rosso di Montalcino is essentially a Baby Brunello. Made from younger vines and aged for a shorter amount of time, time passes and the same vines eventually produce the sought after Brunello di Montalcino. This wine is a straightforward, well made no nonsense wine. Cherry fruit, earthy notes of medium intensity and medium body. Great with Sunday afternoon pasta with tomato sauce with lamb and topped with ricotta.