Isole e Olena Chianti Classico DOCG 2016
Among Tuscany’s finest estates, renowned for their 100% Sangiovese flagship Cepparello, Isole e Olena has created one of the 2016 vintages most exceptional Chianti Classicos.
The Isole e Olena Chianti Classico is a gorgeous, racy wine laced with bright red cherries, flowers and herbs, all of which comes together in the refined, medium-bodied style that is the house signature. It is vibrant, perfumed and impeccable in its overall balance. Good ruby-red. Lovely floral aromas of plum, redcurrant, sweet spices and violet. Sweet, lush and round, with a slightly high-toned quality that adds appeal to the red fruit flavors. Silky smooth, with textural depth, complexity and elegance, it displays all the pedigree of the vintage. Finishes broad and long, with ripe tannins. Thoroughly overachieving for its price point it is fantastic value.
The 2016 vintage is great across Tuscany – as in Bordeaux, Piemonte, the Douro and the Rhône. A balanced, even growing season, it has given a perfect blend of fruit that’s ripe but not overripe, and so able to show aromatic nuances and express place with acidity retaining freshness, and tannins that have highly desirable ripeness and elegance.This wine reflects 2016 beautifully. With a core of ripe cherry, there’s a delightful orange-peel or coriander-seed lift with dusty, earthy notes. A blend of 80% Sangiovese, 15% Canaiolo, 5% Syrah
Estate-grown, hand-harvested grapes are fermented in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks with approximately 15 days maceration. During fermentation, delestage and pumping-over takes place twice a day. After malolactic fermentation, the wine is racked into barrels and 4,000 liter casks where it matures for about one year in a mix of 225-litre barrels (of which just 5% were new), 4,000-litre and 2,700-litre casks adds subtle nutty complexity. The wine has great transparency and clarity of flavour, with the bright acidity typical of 2016 carrying that cherry scent through its long finish.
Its tannins are subtle, and melt into a silky, ethereal quality, meaning that it is both drinking superbly now and will give great pleasure over the next five years.
AWARDS & ACCOLADES
A solid red with dusty, firm tannins and beautiful dark fruit and cedar undertones. Shows depth and intensity. Prefer in 2020 when the tannins and acidity will come together better, but already energetic and pretty.
Here’s a great value from Tuscany. The 2016 Chianti Classico opens to a stream of pretty aromas, with cherry, blue flower and potting soil at the front line. The wine is made with 82% Sangiovese, 15% Canaiolo and 3% Syrah. The fruit is fermented in stainless steel, and the wine ages in oak for a brief seven months. The effect is streamlined and compact, and the wine’s natural freshness gives way to wild cherry, cassis and plum. An ample 120,000 bottles were made. Rating: 92+
– 93 POINTS
Broad and complex, delivering plum, black cherry, almond, leather and earth flavors. The tannins are dusty and well-integrated, while vibrant acidity keeps the flavors pumping through the long finish. Best from 2021 through 2036.
– 92 POINTS
Aromas of wild berry, coffee bean, cedar and French oak lift out of the glass. The linear, elegant palate mirrors the nose, offering Morello cherry, pomegranate, espresso and star anise framed in taut, polished tannins. It’s balanced, with fresh acidity.
The 2016 Chianti Classico is a gorgeous wine that very much captures the essence of the house style. Bright floral and savory notes, sweet red cherry fruit, tobacco and mint are all finely knit in this super-appealing, mid-weight Chianti Classico from Isole e Olena. As always, the Chianti Classico here is lithe, aromatically precise and all about elegance.
– August, 2019, Antonio Galloni