Through the many reinventions of Chianti, the Cecchi family has maintained a traditional approach, focused on marrying longevity to drinkability, with notable success. The story began back in 1893, when founder Luigi Cecchi became a professional wine taster or ‘palatista’ – a surprisingly widespread profession in Europe at the time, and one which paved the way for the bottling of the first wines under the family name. With international success tucked away under their belt, the family invested heavily in vineyards and winemaking. The family’s heart is in Chianti, and the wines that bear this classic name remain the Cecchis’ most valuable asset.
Chianti is produced in the provinces of Siena, Florence, Arezzo, Pisa and Pistoia. These areas are collectively known as the Tuscan Hills, and they have an ancient winemaking heritage. Chianti Cecchi is a marriage of the classic traditions of Chianti (particularly the grape varieties) with the very best of modern winemaking.
This wine is made in the appellation of Chianti Riserva D.O.C.G. and the vines are planted on the hills at an altitude of 270m above sea level. The vinification is traditional in temperature controlled on skin in small and medium stainless steel tanks. The fermentation takes place over 15 days. The wine then ages for 6 months in barriques and 4 months in bottle.
Chianti Cecchi is characterised by a red ruby colour, which tends towards garnet red when aged. On the nose it is intensely aromatic with notes of violets. On the palate it is well balanced with the classic signature of Chianti which make it such a good match with food.
A legendary terroir, prestigious neighbours, a providential encounter: the history and the success of Château Clerc Milon are summed up in these three words. The terroir is that of Pauillac, where some of the world’s finest wines are made. The neighbours are Château Mouton Rothschild and Château Lafite Rothschild, illustrious First Growths whose nearby vines can be seen from the terrace of the Château. The encounter was with Baron Philippe Rothschild, who in 1970 acquired the then badly neglected estate and decided to restore Château Clerc Milon to its status as a Classified Growth.
This wine is densely coloured, with a slightly brickish tint, while the particularly complex nose reveals scents of wilted flowers, incense and tobacco, mingled with more fleeting blackberry and humus aromas. There is sweetness on the palate which is perfectly combined with well-rounded tannins. The finely balanced, supple structure and the combination of smoky notes with wild berry fruit show that this Clerc Milon is now drinking well.
The wines of Château Musar are unique expressions from a country with an ancient wine-making culture, as vines have been cultivated in Lebanon's high altitude Bekaa Valley for over 6000 years. In 1930, at just 20 years old, Gaston Hochar founded Château Musar, inspired by Lebanon’s winemaking tradition and his travels in Bordeaux.
Seven years in the making, Chateau Musar Red is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan and Cinsault from vineyards near the Bekaa Valley villages of Aana and Kefraya on gravelly soils over limestone. Planted from the 1930s onwards, yields are low from these mature bushvines (average age: 40 years).
To see Château Musar's excellent tasting note and information on this wine, please click the blue link below.
The cellars at Mas de Daumas Gassac were formed in the foundations of a Gallo-Roman mill; they now house 400 Merrain oak Bordeaux and Burgundy barrels; one in seven is replaced each year. There are two cold water springs under the cellar’s floor, nature’s own air conditioning system, which slows the alcohol fermentation down to between 8 – 10 days. This slow process means the complex savours have time to develop, something that doesn’t happen with modern high-tech fermentation. As they say at the winery: "Wisdom needs time to develop, so do a wealth of flavours!"
Chemical fertilisers and synthetic matter have no place at Daumas Gassac. They only use compost based on manure produced by ewes from the Larzac.
This wine has a long ageing potential but is drinking well now. Perfect with complex dishes such as red meat, game (especially venison and wild-boar) and cheeses.
To see the winemaker's notes on this wine, please click on the blue link below.