I wanted something to drink last night into my extended “Meat Week.” We picked up dinner at the local Italian deli: prosciutto (I call it “ham candy”), finocchiona, hot and sweet sopressata. Three cheeses: LaTur, a firm pecorino, and Broschetto with black truffle flakes. And assorted Greek olives, pumpkin seeds, spicy peppers, and chocolate. By the way, my new favorite chocolate bar is the Green & Black’s Spiced Chili Dark Chocolate.
It’s a perfect chocolate for red wine and matches wonderfully with the warm spice and aromatic qualities of the Villa Antinori Chianti Classico Riserva.
I was thinking this wine might be a little long to open up because it is a little young, just a 2010 vintage. We opened it before we headed to the deli, and decanted it briefly when we got home. It is drinking really beautifully right now! It was delicious with just that blink of air time. Dark red fruits, earthy herbaceous structure, mellow tannins, and silky texture make it a perfectly balanced, approachable 90% Sangiovese/10% Merlot blend. With just a whiff of red roses, fresh espresso, and spice this has enough complexity and maturity for creative food pairings. Bright enough for our cured meats, opulent with the Broschetto truffled cheese, and a good match for salty olives. Tuscan wines have a great minerality that shine and balance salty foods with its own touch of salinity. The Riserva status wines are by law aged for two years in wood, 3 months in bottle. The contact with wood adds great spice and voluptuous mouth-feel. This may be my new “table wine.” A perfect autumnal drinking wine all the way through winter.