I liked this winery from the get-go for their dedication to the sangiovese grape. With the rise of ‘super Tuscans’ and the popularity of growing cabernet in that part of the world, a bloody great Chianti Classico from 100% sangiovese can sometimes get overlooked. John Dunkley, English-born naturalised Tuscan and founder of Riecine was quoted as saying, “When Baron Philippe de Rothschild plants Sangiovese, I’ll switch to Cabernet Sauvignon.” Winning!
Anyway, on to the wine: I’m not sure if it’s the way it’s made, or where it’s grown, but this’ll suit those with new-world palates. It’s got a plushness and richness that can often be lacking in Chianti. There’s all of that glorious varietal character, but it’s delightfully approachable now even in spite of its undeniably age-worthiness. Think plump sour cherries and cranberries, underlaid with gravelly terracotta notes and dusty tannin. Chianti is THE food wine, so don’t miss the chance to pair with some Tuscan fare. Pop it down in the cellar, slow cook your ‘ragú di cinghiale’ for about four years, and pour a glass when it’s ready. Be warned, it might just be a life-changing experience.
“Just mid ruby. Minerally nose with cranberry and sour cherry. Vibrant sour-cherry palate with fine, persistent tannins. Lacks a tiny bit in depth, but more than makes up for it in energy. (WS)”
It’s cool, we get it, you want to know absolutely everything about this wine. Well here you go, go nuts.
- Alcohol by Vol.
- Bottle Vol
- Blend Info
- 100% Sangiovese
- Serving Temp.
I first heard of this maker when I was working at Ngeringa, a little biodynamic place in the Adelaide Hills. Both winemaker Erinn and then-viticulturist (now successful vigneron in his own right) Tom Shobbrook had both completed harvest at Riecine, and reports were good. Founded by a Brit in the early '70s who bought a hectare and a half from a monastery, and under new ownership since 2011, it sounded like a bit of a gathering place for people in wine who really care about the impact they have on the earth. Now eight organic vineyards at around 500m altitude, the wines have gained a reputation for their purity of fruit and inherent character. Fermentation happens in concrete vats, and ageing happens in vessels that are chosen for their ability for oxygen exchange rather than to impart flavour (concrete again, or older oak). Pretty excited to see their wine here at the ‘fo. Get around it.
Ah...Tuscany. The home of rolling hills, extra virgin olive oil, Steak Florentine and, of course, Chianti. Everything here is about the earth, and it shows through in the produce. Earthy, vinous, purely rustic and unadulterated. Some of our most enjoyable experiences have come from here. They don't generally come cheap, but they're well worth it.
The rules are there ain’t no rules, but here are some foods we think will work pretty well with this wine...
Asian-style braised beef short ribs with Chinese broccoli
- 2 tbs sunflower oil
- 1.2kg beef short ribs (see notes)
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 carrot, sliced
- 1 cup (250ml) light soy sauce
- 1 firmly packed cup (250g) brown sugar
- 4 star anise
- 5 garlic cloves
- 1/2 cup (125ml) rice wine vinegar
- 2 cups (500ml) beef stock
- 1/2 tsp sesame oil
- 3 spring onions, sliced
- Steamed rice, Chinese broccoli and sliced red chilli, to serve
- Preheat the oven to 160°C.
- Heat oil in a flameproof casserole over medium-high heat. Season the beef, then in batches, cook for 3-4 minutes. Remove from pan.
- Add the onion and carrot, then cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes until browned. Add the soy, sugar, star anise, garlic, vinegar, stock, sesame oil and two-thirds of the spring onion and bring to a simmer. Add beef, then cover and transfer to the oven. Roast for 2 1/2-3 hours until meat is tender and falling off the bone.
- Serve beef with rice, Chinese broccoli, chilli and remaining spring onion.
The wines we remember are about the moments. The people, the places. That’s life. Here are some ideas...