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Jancis Robinson on Nittardi

Julia Harding from JancisRobinson.com gave some very high ratings to our wines. Please have a look at  JancisRobinson.com for more information. For sure one of the most serious and informative wine websites around.

whole range

BEN IGT Toscana 2013 16/20 Drink 2015-2017

The name is short for Baniamino, the name usually given to the youngest son. This is the newest Nittardi wine and their first white from the Maremma, vines planted in 2009 (and they have planted more vines in 2013, this time a different clone from Corsica, as well as some Roussanne and Petit Manseng). Fermentation over 25 days at 15 ºC, 59 ºF. Unoaked. RS 2.06, pH 3.37, TA 5.97 g/l.

Relatively restrained on the nose but there’s a peachy, lightly floral, character that appears as it opens up as well as a minerally citrus brightness. Firm and fragrant on the palate, with a dry, pear-grain texture. Very dry and clean as a whistle

but with a bright, stony, almost cedary finish. Very good first vintage. (JH)

Nittardi Riserva Selezionata 2011 Chianti Classico DOCG 17.5/20 Drink 2016-2025

The grapes are from Nittardi’s best vineyard, the Vigna Alta, which lies on a south-facing hill at 500 m above sea level and has a soil full of schist stones. Includes 10% Merlot. 24 months in 500-litre French oak (30% new). Bottled Feb 2014. pH 3.5, TA 5.65 g/l.

Dark, shining cherry red. Dark and spicy, with a spicy sweetness hinting at the oak but the main impression is the dark-red Sangiovese fruit. The oak more evident on the palate but overall it is unexpectedly sweet-tasting and juicy. There is some moreish savoury character but mostly it is the fruit that speaks. Firm, lightly chewy tannins, with some vanilla sweetness on the finish. Supple, polished and with a long, cool finish. Lots more to come.. (JH)

Belcanto 2012 Chianti Classico DOCG 16.5/20 Drink 2015-2018

Half of the grapes come from vineyards at Nittardi, located 450 meters above sea level, while the other half come from a vineyard in Villa Rosa, located south of Castellina at 270 m. The Villa Rosa vineyard, planted in 1968, has Sangiovese and small amounts of seven other local grape varieties, including Canaiolo, Colorino and Malvasia Nera. Soils are a mix of limestone and clay with a rich skeleton of schist. 90% Sangiovese, 10% other local varieties. 12 months in used 500-litre French oak. Bottled Sept 2014, pH 3.57, TA 5.45 g/l. Very attractive label.

Deep cherry red. Red fruits and a dustiness on the nose, giving it a stony character. Seems particularly delicate for a Sangiovese-dominated blend. Super-refined and juicy on the palate, doesn’t really have the meaty/savoury quality I so often find in Sangiovese but this is beautifully fresh and distinctive, the tannins are also on the delicate side, the whole shows harmony and persistence. (JH)

Casanuova di Nittardi 2012 Vigna Doghessa Chianti Classico DOCG 17/20 Drink 2016-2022

100% Sangiovese from the Doghessa vineyard, which is south facing, at 450 m elevation, with schist soils. This year’s artist label is by Karl Otto Götz (born 1914). 14 months in used 500-litre French oak. Bottled August 2014. ph 3.57, TA 5.4 g/l.

Deep ruby with a soft rim. More savoury and meaty than the Belcanto but still rich in pure dark fruit and a hint of red-fruit fragrance to lift it from the glass. This is terrific – cool and fresh and so pure-fruited but far from one-dimensional. There’s spice, a light floral note, and still all that dark complexity. Tannins are smooth and dry, present but not dominant, already allowing the fruit to shine and already fluid across the palate. Lovely clarity and depth and length. Super-fresh Chianti Classico with great potential for further complexity, even though it is surprisingly approachable now. Elegant, fresh finish. So nice not to see the oak. (JH)

Ad Astra 2012 IGT Toscana 16.5/20 Drink 2015-2020

From the Maremma. Nittardi’s ‘second wine’ to the Nectar Dei grand vin. 45% Sangiovese, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot. 10% Syrah, 5% ‘secret varieties’. (They have both Cabernet Franc and Marselan planted so could be either of those.) RS 2.21 g/l, TA 5.6 g/l, pH 3.57. 12 months in French oak and tonneaux. Bottled Feb 2014.

Deep cherry red. Enticingly fragrant – sweet red fruit and spice. On the palate, refreshingly juicy but with real fruit depth. Surprisingly, the Cabernet Sauvignon does not dominate at all though you can feel its presence in an upright backbone. Velvety tannins and a mouth-cleansing finish. Refined and yet still full of fruit, avoiding any excess sweetness.(JH)

Nectar Dei 2011 IGT Toscana 17.5/20 Drink 2016-2025

The vineyard is 8 km from the sea in the Maremma at 250 m elevation. Sandy soil over granite and clay. 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 20% Syrah, 15% Petit Verdot, 5% ‘secret’ varieties. 24 months in barrique, 30% new. pH 3.65, TA 3.61.

Intense dark crimson with deep velvet-red rim. Smells concentrated and dark at first, then, after some aeration, releases a stream of pure dark fruit, the Cabernet Sauvignon showing more here than on the Ad Astra. Rich and velvety on the palate, there’s oak spice but it is very well integrated with the ultra-pure dark fruit. The finish is long, cool and rich. The tannins are extremely supple already but it has the freshness and structure for a long, complex development. Sophisticated and satisfying. (JH)

 

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