Cecchi Chianti Classico Riserva di Famiglia 2015

Deep tawny color; cherry, plum, graphite, earth, leather on the nose; dark cherry, plum, blackberry, raspberry, redcurrant, tomato, tobacco, oak on the palate.

Cecchi Chianti Classico Riserva di Famiglia 2015

Dry; somewhat austere, grippy tannins on pop-and-pour, relaxed and integrated after decanting, but this is traditional Chianti, so there is nothing bashful about this bottle. 90% sangiovese with other red grapes. “Riserva” aged two years—the pinnacle “Gran Selezione” ages 2.5 years—so this is higher end chianti. Many critics suggested this needed age to reach its peak, so I stored it in the back of the wine refrigerator. At eight years it is moving into its quality period.

Medium-plus body and boldness. Some balancing acidity. Plenty of oak nuances, but that works well with the dark sangiovese fruit. Good complexity and length. Savory, begs for rich meat fare accompanied with pasta with tomato. A wine for a hearty feast enjoyed slowly with friends, laughter, and tales of love and glory. 14% ABV

Cecchi vineyard and winery

The Cecchi family has been making wine since 1893. Luigi Cecchi laid the foundation. The website notes: “Luigi’s reputation is renown internationally, so much so that already during the ‘30s the family name began its unrelenting growth. In the ‘70s, the family moved to the municipality of Castellina in Chianti, a historical Chianti Classico production site, where the productive process that would then become the hallmark of constant quality began.”

Cesare and Andrea Cecchi

In 2015, Andrea and Cesare Cecchi, the fourth generation of the family invested in Chianti Classico by acquiring the historic Villa Rosa. The winery focused on sustainability in the 1990s. They were the first Tuscany business to build a plant-based sewage treatment facility to reduce energy consumption and reuse the purified water. The plant was upgraded in 2012 and won the Eco-Efficient Tuscany prize.

Cecchi Chianti Classico Riserva di Famiglia 2015 is vibrant and powerful, just coming into its best form after eight years. Robust red fruits and tannic punch—best to let it age, then decant. Rich and full in the mouth. Nicely long finish. Becomes more seductive as it airs in glass and as it meanders to the back of your palate. Impressive. Pair with rich cuts of beef, plenty here to tango with fatty cuts, ribeye would be excellent; veal; lamb; pasta dishes with tomato sauces, lasagna, ravioli (what grows together goes together). Meat-lovers pizza and other comfort food works, but there are several less pricey chiantis that can fill that niche. Cheese—hard Italian cheeses; parmesan, sharp cheddar, pecorino Toscano, grana padano, asiago, provolone, fontina, colby. $40-48

Famiglia Cecchi website

Cecchi winery
Cecchi fermentation tanks
Cecchi barrel room