100 percent Sangiovese grape, aged four years in Slavonian oak barrels and 12 months in bottle, pours a near perfectly clear garnet color. Upon opening, this wine was a bit tight, obscuring the layers of flavor that would emerge later. Decanted for an hour, it took on new dimensions. Wonderfully delicate and drinkable mouthfeel might even cause you to miss soft red berries hiding behind a medley of exotic spices: cocoa nibs, cloves, star anise, soy and cinnamon bark. Akin to Bordeaux, this is heady and thoughtful wine that would pair nicely with oxtails or bone-in veal breast braised long and slow in a rib-sticking, gelatinous broth flavored with roasted garlic and melting onions. Cellared, it should age well and is likely to improve in the next four years especially.
MSRP: $60 (December 2011)
Wine Lines rating: 90