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Sunday 2 April 2017

An Evening With Barone Ricasoli

A tasting of Ricasoli wines with Barone Francesco Ricasoli

Meeting the Baron

An elegant and charismatic man who makes elegant and impressive wines, Baron Francesco Ricasoli talked over dinner about the challenges not just of vintage and climate, but also deer and wild boar in the vineyard as well as Italian bureaucracy.

Dismissive of the natural wine movement, he wants to make the best wines he can that will stand the test of time, not be the dog that barks at every passing car.

What most impressed me, however, was his sense of team work at the winery - more important than his own strong opinions, he encourages all of his team to think, learn and explore ideas and challenge existing norms.

For the Baron, the team's role is not simply to carry out their jobs but beyond that to learn from outside influences, challenge assumptions and come up with new ideas.
A bit of history
One of the most established producers from the Chianti region, the Ricasoli family has been associated with winemaking in the since 1141.

Italy’s oldest wine estate, and now the largest in Chianti, it was Francesco's ancestor Bettino Ricasoli who created the classic Chianti blend in the 1870s.
The wines 
To start
2015 Torricella Chardonnay fresh, elegant, deft and harmonious in a tight, pure unoaked style. Good.

Flight #1
A pair of super-Tuscans 

2013 Casalferro (Merlot) very fresh with varietal coffee grounds and cherries, spice and fine tannins. Merlot with a Tuscan accent. Very Good.

2006 Casalferro (Sangiovese, Merlot) fresh and youthful, still primary with plums, tobacco leather and liquorice; elegant, pure and harmonious. Very Good.

Flight #2
A trio of Chiantis from different vintages - all showed fresh, pure cherry fruit with  fine tannins and leatheriness. Here the 2008 stood out as the best. 

2013 Castello Di Brolio Chianti Classico Gran Selezione fuller, plumper, more youthful. Very Good.
2008 Castello Di Brolio Chianti Classico fresh and primary, very adept and balanced. Very Good Indeed.
2003 Castello Di Brolio Chianti Classico the beginnings of some rosehip and aged character. Very Good.

Flight #3

A duo this time; both were plump and supple, fresh and elegant with cherry, plum and rapsberry fruit.

2013 Colledila Gran Selezione lovely fruit, fine tannins and great length. Very Good.
2010 Colledila full and plump. Very Good Indeed.

Flight #4
2007 Castello Di Brolio Vin Santo fresh and floral with beeswaxy honeysuckle; toffee, butterscotch and dried apricots, sweet spices, leather and freshness. Very delicious. Very Good.

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