Il Molino de Grace Chianti Classico 2005
Tuesday, January 4, 2011 at 11:33AM
Linda Johnson-Bell

Il Molino de Grace Chianti Classico 2005, Panzano, Tuscany

Served with dinner at home: Rib-eye Aberdeen Angus steak with Béarnaise sauce, herb salad and jacket potato.

100% Sangiovese – a good start, but I cannot seem to find a happy ending here. I visited this stunning estate last year. The owner is American, the winemaker, Bavarian and the consultant oenologist is Italian: which should make for a perfect recipe. They claim to be highly passionate men – but they are making wine with their socks on. What confuses me is that the wines look good on paper. They tick all the boxes on the technical details sheet. And they seem to be making all the decisions that would result in a terroir-driven, traditional wine, but they are definitely very “modern” in style…appealing to the more international palate. They lack any real excitement or individuality – so what got lost in translation? Is this the inherent result of using a consultant oenologist who involuntarily puts his stamp on the wines? I don’t know. But having tasted several vintages of the entire range, both at the estate and at home, one is left with the impression of their being technically correct but not much more. My international colleagues on that trip all agreed. I will reserve final judgment until I can go back to some of them after more aging…I would love to be proved wrong. The Chianti Classico tonight had a very dark robe – so I think they did add some Cabernet Sauvignon, with lively acidity, big fruit, well-balanced tannins…but for all the hype, the earth should have moved…

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