June 17, 2020
“True Connoisseurs of Sangiovese,” Take Note — This Is the Finest Expression in a Quarter of a Century from “One of the Great Estates in the World”
“Fèlsina is one of the great estates in the world. It's as simple as that…. I can’t remember the last time I was this excited about Chianti Classico and its wines.” — Antonio Galloni, Vinous
“The 2016 Fontalloro is the best vintage of this landmark wine.” – Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
Though all eyes looking towards the 2017 releases from Tuscany, we are not done with the vaunted and classic vintage of 2016! Like the 2010 and 2013 vintages, 2016 is a classic year built on harmony and a more balanced growing season, where the wines express rich fruit and depth, but with more finesse and elegance than years like 2011, 2012, and 2015. There are simply awesome acidity and freshness from cooler conditions and a longer growing season — the aromatics alone transport you to Tuscany and get you excited about the promise of these wines. And with our recent offerings of 2016 Percarlo, as well as Flaccianello and Le Pergole Torte, let alone Tignanello, how can we match these benchmark expressions of Sangiovese from the Tuscan hills? This past weekend we had it, a wine that rightfully belongs in this elite class of these noble interpretations of Sangiovese at a fraction of the price — the 2016 Fontalloro from Fèlsina.
We are not alone. Monica Larner of Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate cheered that the “2016 Fontalloro is the best vintage of this landmark wine that I have tasted thus far.” Many more, from critics to collectors, have echoed this sentiment, saying that this is the finest release in more than 25 years. This is one case where we emphatically agree with all the reviews and statements glorifying this wine and vintage. Few wines have captured such attention at this price point, and for IWM, the 2016 Fontalloro is another explosive expression from one of the icons of Tuscan winemaking. Moreover, because this wine possesses elegant, silky tannins, minerality and ample red fruit, all while retaining its senses of place and varietal, this wine can be enjoyed by both the ardent connoisseur of Sangiovese and the Burgundy enthusiast.
We were so enamored by the Fontalloro that we experienced last week that we went back out in search of the SOLD OUT wine and just secured a new allocation from Italy. Do not miss this final opportunity to grab this iconic Tuscan in the making. In true IWM fashion, we are including the 2016 Fontalloro with some good company from the Fèlsina stable of wines, as well as back vintage selections that you will want to load up on, as few wines delivers such value and longevity.
Featured Wines: 2016 Fèlsina Fontalloro and More Tuscan Highlights (Click to Order)
If you love Italian wine, you know that Fattoria di Fèlsina has long been one of the beloved names in Tuscan wine. Here in the prized hamlet of Castelnuovo Berardegna ( just thirty miles outside of Montalcino), Giuseppe Mazzocolin, Giovanni Poggiali, and longtime winemaker Franco Bernabei produce one of the finest ranges of age-worthy and complex Chianti and Sangiovese bottlings. What makes this estate unique among many of the region’s producers is their dedication to terroir and use of indigenous grape varietals. While many of their neighbors blend Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot in their Chianti, Fèlsina remains traditionalists to the core. Their Riserva Vigna Rancia is widely regarded as the finest Chianti, sitting alongside Fontodi’s Vigna del Sorbo and Castello di Ama’s Bellavista. However, like Fontodi’s Flaccianello, the flagship Fontalloro is one of those monovarietal Super Tuscans that drinks like a Brunello; it’s burlier and wilder, whereas the Riserva Rancia is more ethereal and precise. The 2016 Fontalloro is an awesome display of structure and pure, lively Sangiovese fruit that makes us think back to years like 2010, a classic and powerful vintage that showed best with a little maturity.
However, if you love Fèlsina and Sangiovese, it does not end with Fontalloro. Indeed, the more precise and ethereal Fèlsina Chianti Classico Riserva Rancia from limestone heavy soils is regarded as one of the pinnacle expressions of Sangiovese and Chianti Classico Riserva. We are including the critically acclaimed release from 2016, along with the benchmark expressions of 2010, 2013, and 2015, as these are some of finest interpretations of the noble Sangiovese — and they can age decades. Lastly, for the more serious Italian collector, there is the rare and elusive Colonia Gran Selezione, Fèlsina’s grand cru selection. A mere handful of cases arrive in the US, and Italian Wine Merchants is just one of a few retailers able to make this wine available.
ADDITIONAL NOTES AND REVIEWS:
“The estate's 2016s and 2015s are simply magnificent. Readers will get a very good sense of the elegance of 2016 and the power of the 2015s with this range. While it is certainly tempting to focus on the flagships, both the Chianti Classico and Chianti Classico Riserva are fabulous choices for readers looking for ageworthy wines that are affordable, something that has always been a strong suit at Fèlsina, where prices remain exceedingly fair. More than anything else, though, Fèlsina represents all the best values of Chianti Classico and its wines.” — Antonio Galloni, Vinous
2016 FÈLSINA FONTALLORO IGT
Christopher Deas, Italian Wine Merchants: “WOW! I had the more ethereal and precise Rancia and was absolutely floored – easily one of finest expressions of Sangiovese from this benchmark vintage. But for Fèlsina, it did not end with iconic Chianti Classico Riserva. The Fontalloro picks up right where Rancia leaves off, adding more volume in density and immediacy. This is an explosive wine that has benefitted from its additional time in bottle. Expect ripe, succulent red and black fruits highlighted by black cherries, nuances of red licorice, sandalwood, baked earth, crushed flowers, and herbs that echo on the back of the palate and linger for a long finish. The best favor I can do for someone is to emphatically recommend this wine. A whole lot deliciousness now and for years to come. In a word — MAGNIFICENT.”
98+ Points, Monica Larner, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate: “The 2016 Fontalloro is the best vintage of this landmark wine that I have tasted thus far. This is a very elegant vintage, with more volume in the mouth and precise notes of tar, licorice, camphor ash, resin and Indian spice. In a race between the highly competitive 2015 and 2016 vintages, I give a slight advantage to this wine. The warmer 2015 vintage shows more richness and exuberant fruit. However, this wine from 2016 offers a more focused and chiseled delivery. I am hopeful that this wine will continue to evolve and sharpen as it ages in the bottle. This is a beautiful wine to put aside in your cellar for ten years or more.”
96 Points, Antonio Galloni, Vinous: “The 2016 Fontalloro is bold, hearty and deeply flavored, with all of the Sangiovese wildness that is so typical of Fontalloro. Ripe dark cherry, grilled herbs, smoke, leather, game and incense are some of the many aromas and flavors that open up in a potent, virile Fontalloro loaded with personality and character. In so many ways, 2016 is THE archetype of what Fontalloro is - a Sangiovese that is a bit wild and unruly but also full of charm.”
2016 FÈLSINA CHIANTI CLASSICO GRAN SELEZIONE COLONIA
97 Points, Antonio Galloni, Vinous: “The 2016 Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Colonia possesses off the charts richness and intensity in a bold, racy style that captures all the best this site has to offer. Striking inner perfume, bright red Sangiovese fruit and soft contours add to the wine's compelling balance. Much more open today than Rancia, Colonia is positively stunning in 2016. In fact, it is the finest Colonia yet. The 2016 spent 26 months in French oak, 100% new, all of which it handles with aplomb.”
2016 FÈLSINA CHIANTI CLASSICO RISERVA VIGNA RANCIA
96 Points, Monica Larner, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate: “The 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva Rancia knocks it out of the park. Like the other new releases from Fèlsina, this pure expression of Sangiovese needs more time to evolve and improve with bottle age. But even at this young stage, you are made fully aware of the beautiful intensity and complexity of the quality fruit at its core. There is so much energy and tension here, further reinforced by the fresh acidity of the vintage. There are vibrant tones of wild cherry, raspberry and spice, followed up by white truffle and tilled earth.”
This is an email ONLY offer. Should you have any questions on these exciting wines, or would like to take advantage of this offer while supplies last, we are asking that you email orders back to me at email@example.com, connect with your portfolio manager, or mention receipt of this offer if calling the store. All orders are subject to confirmation.
All my best,