Monte Bernardi, Fiasco Vino Rosso Litres
Brand : Monte Bernardi
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Customers of a certain age will remember chianti bottles in straw baskets. Some of you may even have one in the attic, converted into an impromptu lamp. The chances are it didn't originally contain a wine this good.
Fiasco is an affectionate, amusing nod in the direction of those straw-covered flasks. It's an unoaked red blend made with organic grapes sourced from all over Italy, and it's very very drinkable. It's medium-bodies, full of juicy red berry flavours, with floral and spicy hints for company. Minimal SO2, bags of energy, very easy to like and a bit of a bargain!
The Monte Bernardi estate covers 53 hectares, 15 of which are under vine. 4.8 of these hectares are held on a long lease, which was taken out in 2011. The vineyards are situated in the hilly, southern-most region of Panzano, an area long acknowledged as one of the Grand Crus of Chianti Classico. Michael Schmelzer and his family bought the estate in 2003, and have invested heavily in it ever since.
The vines are planted on a soil of a high rock content mixture which, depending on the vineyard, consists of shale (Galestro), sandstone (Arenaria) and limestone (Alberese). The vineyards are perfectly situated at an altitude of 350 metres above sea level, surrounded by forests and enjoying a southern exposure, with the river Pesa flowing just a few hundred metres to the south. The estate has been certified organic and bio-dynamic since 2004. Grass and cover crops are grown in alternate rows: composted cow manure and biodynamic preparations are used. Harvesting is by hand, usually from late September until mid-October. Annual production is between 55,000 and 65,000 bottles. None of the wines is filtered.
The wines are pure and elegant, with bright fruit and great length.