The “natural woman” Angela Fronti is the real “fresh face” of a wonderful Chianti Classico Riserva that thrilled me at last FIVI Market. FIVI is Italian Federation of Indipendent Winegrowers. FIVI winemakers in Italy are a clear sample of artisans winemakers, the classic vigneron, who follow in first person all the steps from vine to wine, up to the marketing and communication of their products. Wines that almost always are the result of organic or natural agriculture, without (or almost) use of chemical treatments in the vineyard and in the cellar.
Angela Fronti, 37, graduated in Enology and Viticulture at the University of Florence, is a clear and shining example of this category of producers. She is the second generation of a family who has worked in the vineyards since 1959. Bruno Fronti, Angela’s grandfather, created a service activity in agriculture, Agrichianti, specialized in earth-moving, vineyard plants and green management. Afterwards, land was purchased for planting vineyards. An activity grown thanks to the Bruno’s sons Fabio and Stefano. Today the Istine company covers 20 hectares of vineyards in the municipalities of Radda in Chianti and also for a small part at Gaiole in Chianti. We are in the province of Siena (Tuscany).
Angela tells: “The wine produced with our grapes, except for a small part for our family, was sold as bulk wine to other wineries. Until 2009 I worked as sales manager for other estates (Tenimenti D’Alessandro at Cortona and Bindella at Montepulciano), learning all about the world of wine. Then I decided to make a “reset” of my life and I came back to Radda in Chianti to work as closely as possible to our “family wines”.
Actually, Angela, after graduating in Enology and Viticulture at the University of Florence, had to sweat not a little to convince her father Fabio and uncle Stefano to work to improve the quality of wines. The first 2,666 bottles of Chianti Classico DOCG were produced in 2009.
At the time the whole Fronti family has a great goal: respect nature in Alto Chianti area and keeping true to traditions. The choice of organic and sustainable viticulture goes in this direction.
From 2012 harvest the “LeVigne” (that means: the vineyards) is born a Chianti Classico Riserva (Reserve) that comes from the separate vinification of Sangiovese according to single original vineyards. Thus different wines are obtained based only according characteristics of each specific vineyard, such as exposure, soil and altitude.
“LeVigne” is therefore the best Sangiovese grape harvested in three different vineyards representing three different Chianti Classico areas: Vigna Istine (between Radda and Castellina), Vigna Casanova dell’Aia (near Radda) and Vigna Cavarchione (in Vertine, Gaiole ).
My tasting note. Istine Chianti Classico Riserva “LeVigne” 2013 DOCG shows light and elegant aromas of fresh violet, blackberries, incense and juniper on balsamic background. Soft and fine sip, strong but not sharp, fresh and with smooth tannins. Taste of long persistence. A modern Chianti Classico, a real “best practice”. It is a long-lived wine that can be drunk with great satisfaction even in 15-20 years.
Some technical data. After the vinification in separate tanks of the best grapes for each vineyard, after one year it’s chosen how much wine for each vineyard to be allocated to Riserva LeVigne the company’s winery top wine. Then the wine is assembled in a single barrel to continue the aging in wood. Alcoholic fermentation: about 15 days in cement tanks at controlled temperature max 25 °. Maceration on the skins: about 21 days. Malolactic fermentation in wooden barrels. Aging: 18 months in 20 hectoliters Slavonian oak barrels (12 of which separated and 6 assembled).
Production: about 4,000 bottles. Bottled in September 2015. First year produced: 2012
Suggested matching: pasta “strozzapreti” with wild boar ragout.
Retail price: € 30 – $ 37. My rating: 93/100