You may or may not have noticed, but I’ve been making my way through some inexpensive Sangiovese wines of late. The goal is to learn a little more about the wine as well as what is available to the budget-minded consumer in this varietal. I realize that to learn more, I’ll have to splurge a bit. And I will, I will. Of course, there is also the whole Chianti thing. Since many of the Chianti selections are blends, however, I’m sticking to the single varietal Sangiovese right now to help me understand this grape and the kind of wine it becomes. My exploration of this varietal is precisely why I couldn’t pass up this selection.
Winemaker: Grifone by Roccadoro (Castellani)
Appellation: Puglia IGT, Italy
Price: $4.99 at Trader Joe’s
Notes: This cheap Italian was dark red in the glass. I’d compare it to a velvet curtain in a traditional opera house. That shade of red. On the nose I found violets, plum and pepper. The body was very light but with a gentle plushness on the tongue. Acidity was good. Alcohol was at 12.5%. Tannins were moderate but distinctly present. As far as flavors I detected, there was an overarching woodiness (think dried twigs) to the wine, some pleasant plum, and a touch of pepper. The finish was a mix of tart and bitter much like pomegranate. This is definitely a good value. Amazing? No. Decent? You bet!