Following the majestic 2008 was always going to be tricky for the Piemaggio team - but with this newly released 2012 - they have done it with aplomb! Not surprisingly this is a little more structured a little firmer boned than the 2008 - but there are no hard edges at all. Just a beautiful, delineated shape to the complex flavours. An almost Bordeaux elegance and lifted aromatic feel. Poised and intense a brilliantly pure example of how joyous Sangiovese can be. Fermented in stainless steel - the wine then spends a year in large Concrete tanks - followed by a second stretch of 18 months, slowly ageing in large 20 Hecto-litre French Oak Casks - before being bottled and aged further in their cellars before release. For a wine that is approaching 6 years of age this is still so fresh and intense, beautiful sculpted tannins give a lovely fine structure, overlaid cherry and a touch of taut plum juice. The finish has great drive and zip, with notes of tobacco and cedar, just so drinkable. Bravo! L&S (Jan 2018)
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Piemaggio sits up on the high slopes of Castellina in Chianti, just to the North East of the town. With stony, galestra laden vineyards between 400 and 450 metres above sea-level there is very much a 'cooler climate' feel to these wines than so many in Chianti. At this height the temperature drops notably in the evenings and this has a great impact on the grapes - slow steady ripening and a broad diurnal temperature range which helps concentrate more complex flavours and avoid over richness in the juice.
Based entirely within the small 'cru' called Le Fioraie this small (15 Hectare) farm is making some brilliant, finely layered wines - each with a precision and persistent elegance that has wowed us at each tasting we have had together. Winemaker Michele Neri was born at the estate in the early 1970's and although it is now owned by another family - he still oversees all the estate's production.
So elegant, so fine - their systematic approach to long ageing in their cellars before release means that these arrive in the UK absolutely ready to drink.
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