Who doesn't know the most popular red wine in Italy? Chianti belongs to the image of Italy like chocolate to Switzerland, the wines from Tuscany are the epitome of Italianità around the globe. Although famous, the reputation of Chianti Classico is unfortunately not always the best, many of the wines disappear in large mass bottlings.
The association of Chianti Classico producers, the Consorzio Gallo Nero, has recognized the need for action and has started a new quality classification. For three years, the responsible persons had been working on a concept and introduced a three-level model. Since then, the Gran Selezione designation has been at the top of the quality scale. It is to bring radiance to the famous growing area between Florence and Siena. Only wines from the best vineyards of a wine estate and according to strict rules and even stricter controls are allowed to bear this predicate. For instance, the wines have to stay in the cellar for at least 30 months, the minimum extract values are 26 grams per liter, and the assignment of the vineyards to the different categories is done before production.
The differences between these criteria and the next level, Riserva, are minimal. Here, the storage time before sale is 24 months and the extract values are 25 grams per liter.
The base wine Chianti Classico, the main part of the production, is called Annata, vintage wine, and makes up the lowest level.
For all categories, the rule is that the wines must consist of 80 percent Sangiovese grapes. So far, so good. So the most striking feature in the new certification is the selection of the best vineyards.
more about Chianti classico DOCG Gran Selezione