Hello friends. January can be a wonderful time of year for sourcing wine values. In October and November and December, wineries and importers can convince themselves that this just might be the holiday season where their sales explode. Deals are a little hard to come by.
There’s no such magical thinking in January. And what’s especially wonderful about January is that the deals are often being offered on wines just entering their peak drinking window. A new vintage is coming in, and the old vintage needs to move out. Of course the backwards thing about the wine industry is that the old vintage is likely the better drinking of the two, and yet *that’s* the one being offered on discount.
Mind you, I’m not complaining, and I’m all too happy to take advantage on behalf of our list members. Today’s wine, for example, began its life at a $20 price point, and it was a good deal even at two sawbucks. But today, we can do better:
That was Antonio Galloni, writing about the Maialina project a few years ago. High praise indeed, and to be able to access this wine at seven years past vintage seems just right.
I continue to be thrilled with the way our list members have embraced Chianti over the past few years. It is a terrific value-hunter’s category, but it requires legwork, a lot of frog-kissing to find the princes. And that’s the Full Pull model: we kiss the frogs so you don’t have to.
Chianti’s fortunes are improving in the US market, but it’s still walking the line between fashionable and unfashionable, still burdened by the days of swill-in-straw-baskets. But no matter. We know better. Fashion or no, we know that Chianti remains one of the world’s beating hearts of Sangiovese, and that the good bottles are really, really good.
This is indeed very very good for a $15 tag. It begins with a nose of smoky peat, mushroom, and sour cherry fruit: classic maturing Sangiovese. That savory fungal note continues on the palate, and it makes this just such an appetizing food wine. Insistently earthy, it has bright blood-orange acid and lovely cherry-pit bitters. The whole thing feels very true to Italy, and there’s way more complexity and intensity than we’d normally expect at this price point. I’d put this right in the middle of its peak drinking window, and I suspect it will continue to offer loads of maturing pleasure through 2019 or 2020.
First come first served up to 12 bottles, and the wine should arrive in the next week or two, at which point it will be ready for pickup or shipping during the next temperature-appropriate shipping window.