The 2007 Flaccianello della Pieve captures the essence of this great Tuscan vintage. It is a decidedly sexy, opulent wine bursting at the seams with rich red berries, mint and spices. The tannins are present but virtually undetectable under layer after layer of fruit. There is no question the 2007 is seamless, opulent and full-bodied. Readers who prefer more structured wines will gravitate to vintages such as 2001 and 2004. I find the 2007 utterly irresistible. It will also drink better earlier than some of the most classic vintages. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2027.
This complete vertical of Fontodi’s flagship 100% Sangiovese Flaccianello was yet another of the remarkable tastings of my recent trip to Tuscany. Flaccianello is an interesting wine because the quality level that is the norm today only really starts around 2001. Prior to that the wines were very good, and sometimes even better than that, but not profound. In 2001 proprietor Giovanni Manetti made the decision to focus on his estate’s best fruit rather than making Flaccianello as a single-vineyard wine. Since then, Flaccianello has routinely been among the most exciting wines in Tuscany. Much of the fruit that now goes into Flaccianello comes from vineyards in the Pecille sub-zone of Panzano with a full southern exposure. Today Flaccianello is 100% Sangiovese, but the first vintages up to and including 1984 have 15% white grapes, as was common at the time. The early vintages up until 1990 spent about one year in French oak barrels, 50% new. In the mid-1990s Manetti increased the period of barrel aging to 18 months with the 1997, and then to 24 months with the 2006. Today the percentage of new barrels is close to 100%.
Fontodi Flaccianello Key Points:
1. 100% Sangiovese aged in French oak barrels
2. Since 2001 made from the estate’s best fruit across a number of vineyards in Panzano’s historic Conca d’Oro, prior to that a strict single-vineyard wine.
3. Flaccianello’s status as an icon wine is cemented beginning in 2001
4. One of the more powerful of the 100% Sangioveses from Chianti Classico
5. Aging potential: 20+ years