Wine Wednesday: Frescobaldi's Nipozzano Chianti Riserva 2020

Every Wednesday, we pick a wine to talk about—good, bad, ugly, or somewhere on the spectrum. Sometimes our wine of choice goes with what we’re reading, sometimes it’s a new favorite, sometimes it’s a perfect pairing for an upcoming holiday. Today: Chianti!

Well, I’m currently (and newly) obsessed with Chianti. It’s generally dry and so easy to drink, and (of course) pairs perfectly with Italian dinners. Especially tomato-based sauces, pizza, and meat. Plus, as with many Italian wines, it has a rich history and very strict rules. If you see “Chianti” on the label, you know the wine hails from Tuscany’s Chianti Region. Here are a few other fun facts:

  • Chianti breaks down into various categories of increasing quality: (1) Standard Chianti (70%+ Sangiovese), (2) Chianti Classico (80%+ Sangiovese and aged at least 7 months), (3) Chianti Classico Riserva (minimum aging of 24 months), and (4) Chianti Classico Gran Selezione (minimum aging of 30 months, made exclusively from the winery’s own grapes, must pass a suitability test).
  • Chianti is made primarily from the Sangiovese grape, with small percentages of other red grapes allowed.
  • It’s typically medium-bodied, dry, and high in tannins, depending on the sub-region and other factors.
  • People have been making wine in this region for 2,000 years, and Chianti was designated sometime in the 13th century.

My new favorite Chianti: Frescobaldi’s Nipozzano Chianti Riserva 2020.

Smooth, delicious, and reasonably priced, Nipozzano Chianti Riserva won my heart and taste buds! Here’s what the winemaker noted:

Nipozzano 2020 is ruby red of medium intensity, very clear. On the nose, it begins with intense fruity scents of wild berries and cherries, followed by clear floral notes of violet. Fresh and balsamic, it has pleasant spicy undertones of pepper, nutmeg and roasted Arabicacoffee. In the mouth, it is satisfying, harmonious, fresh, fruity and mineral, with a dense and silky tannic texture. With its remarkable taste olfactory correspondence, Nipozzano always dazzles with its extraordinary pleasantness that appeals to the taste buds of a vast and diverse range of consumers. The finish is pleasantly persistent and balanced in its various components.

We tried it while in Florence and it dazzled us with the flavor and the value. We snagged a bottle at a nice restaurant for around $20, and it’s available on wine.com and totalwine.com for the same price. Can’t wait to load up!

Well, it’s a Chianti, so what better book pairing than an Italian romance? A few of my favorites are Leonie Mack’s A Taste of Italian Sunshine and Italy Ever After, June Patrick’s Italian Rendezvous, T.A. Williams’ Never Too Late, Catherine Bybee’s Beginning of Forever, and R.S. Grey’s A Place in the Sun.