Chianti DOCG

Chianti D.O.C.G.

When we talk about Chianti, an image of great suggestive power is evoked, rich in a thousand meanings: it evokes a territory, that of the rolling hills of Chianti, of cypresses that like thin brushes outline the avenues that lead to the manor houses and ancient farms . However, it also evokes the best known wine area in the world, that of Chianti D.O.C.G.

The Chianti region territory

The Chianti area extends over undefined boundaries but which roughly coincide with those of the short mountain range of the Chianti Hills, whose highest peak is Monte San Michele (893 meters above sea level) in the municipality of Greve in Chianti .

The soil, which is decisive in marking the different characteristics of the wines from area to area, is made up of an alternation of sandstone and marly limestone (Alberese) in the mountain ranges; an alternation of marly, clayey and schist formations in the higher hills; alternation of calcareous gravels, sand and clay in the lower hills.

History of Chianti

Wanting to look for the origin of the historical boundaries of Chianti, a first definition corresponds to those that were the three municipalities of the medieval Chianti League with its famous black rooster, namely the current Castellina in Chianti, Radda in Chianti and Gaiole in Chianti. A subsequent historical definition is then found in the "Notice Above the Declaration of the Borders of the four Regions Chianti, Pomino, Carmignano, and Val d'Arno di Sopra" written in 1716 by Cosimo III de'Medici, in which the boundaries were also extended to Greve (today Greve in Chianti).

Here Cosimo not only defined the boundaries of production, but also sanctioned the indissoluble link between the production area and the quality of the product. If we add this to the fact that Cosimo, a few months earlier, had established a Congregation responsible for checking that the wines were not adulterated during shipment, precisely to ensure their quality and reputation ("decorum of the Nation"), it can be said that Cosimo III had actually created a primordial disciplinary for the production of Chianti wine.

It takes a few centuries to jump to 1932, when the Chianti wine area was established. Therefore, the original boundaries of Chianti production - included from that moment in the Chianti Classico sub-area - were extended to other municipalities in the province of Florence.

Chianti DOCG regulations

The Controlled and Guaranteed Denomination of Origin Chianti is today extended to a very large territory covering six of the Tuscan provinces (Florence, Siena, Arezzo, Pisa, Pistoia, Prato), represented by the following sub-areas:

Chianti Colli Aretini
Chianti Colli Fiorentini
Chianti Colli Senesi
Chianti Colline Pisane
Chianti Montalbano
Chianti Montespertoli
Chianti Rufina

The vines admitted in the Disciplinary of the Chianti D.O.C.G. they see Sangiovese as the absolute protagonist, which in Tuscany finds its highest expressions in both Chianti DOCG and Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, in Nobile di Montepulciano DOCG and in many other Tuscan denominations.

The grape variety, which is characterized by a rather pale ruby ​​color, is dominated by the typical hint of violet on the nose and is austere and decisive in the mouth, must participate for at least 80% of the blend.

Numerous other complementary red grape varieties allowed for the Tuscany Region are also allowed, even if mainly the blends are made with other native vines such as Colorino, Canaiolo, or with international vines such as Merlot and Cabernet sauvignon. It is also possible to add white grape varieties (usually Trebbiano is used) allowed for a maximum of 10%.

The denomination includes three types of Chianti DOCG:

Chianti DOCG
Chianti Superiore DOCG
Chianti Riserva DOCG

Food pairings of Chianti D.O.C.G.

The best combinations, as almost always happens, are to be found in the typical local cuisine. In the types with shorter aging, Chianti Docg goes well with ribollita, medium-aged cheeses and grilled red meats. Impossible not to think of the Florentine steak.

For the Chianti DOCG Riserva type, with at least two years of aging, the best combinations are to be found in the great tradition of game dishes, where the greater intensity of flavors goes well with the structure of the wine.

Characteristics of the Chianti area in detail