Selvapiana Chianti Rufina Hits All The Right Notes
Selvapiana Chianti Rufina (DOCG) Vendemmia 2020, 13.5%ABV
RRP €25.99. Avoca. Neighbourhood Wines. Mitchell & Son. 64 Wine. Sweeney's D3. Power & Co Fine Wines. Blackrock Cellar. Wineonline.ie
You’ll notice that this wine is designated DOCG, the highest in Italy. Rufina is one of the sub zones of Chianti and got its DOC In 1967 and the DOCG followed in 1984. Today the Chianti Rufina appellation, extending over 750 hectares, is the smallest appellation of Chianti.
A small area then but with quite a wine, made from the Sangiovese grape, the key grape in Chianti and the most planted in Italy as a whole. You may well be surprised that it is planted so widely in the country but it comes under a number of aliases including Carmignano, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, Chianti, Torgiano Rosso, Montefalco Rosso, Rosso Di Montalcino, Morellino Di Scansano and Rosso Conero! Confusing for sure.
This vibrant ruby red sees blackberry and cherry feature in the aromas, along with herbal and spicy notes. It is elegant on the palate where it is ripe and juicy (with red fruit flavours) and where its typical refreshing acidity help maintain the superb balance all the way to the charming finish with its floral notes. Elegant and precise and with good length, this Chianti Rufina is Very Highly Recommended, especially if you like the lighter styles.
Rufina may be a sub-zone in Chianti but is a highly regarded. Its best wines are a match, some say more than a match, for those from Chianti Classico. This producer is one of the best and produces the wine from the area’s famous Sangiovese grape (with a touch of Canaiolo). It is aged for 12 months, some in steel but most in oak casks and barriques.
The usual advice is to buy your Chianti from Chianti Classico, the name given to wines from the original historic boundaries. But Wine Folly writes: Both Chianti Classico and Chianti Rufina are likely to be of higher quality, since they are made in smaller quantities from distinct historical areas. Our Rufina certainly underlines that point.
By the way, if you come across an olive oil from Tuscany with Selvapiana on the label, it is from this same producer and is superb. It is not just a sideline here as in many vineyards. The estate covers 250 hectares, 60 of which are planted under vine (95% being Sangiovese), 36 are olive groves, and the rest is covered by woods.
This Rufina is Very Highly Recommended.