Monday, February 3, 2014

Meeting winemaker Marco Fizialetti fom Castello di Querceto

This past Thursday evening was a wonderful event put on by the NH Liquor Stores & Wine Outlets for Easter Seals.  Such a great event to help a good cause, taste over 1,500 wines, meet winemakers and taste a variety of samplings from some great restaurants throughout the state.  

Chianti Classico region of Tuscany
Chianti Classico region
What a great way to finish the night stopping by to say Ciao to our friend, Andrea Cecchi again from the night before, but also meeting Marco Fizialetti, the winemaker from Castello di Querceto in the town of Greve in the heart of the Chianti Classico region in Tuscany.  I love the Italian people for their hospitality and the excitement they portray in meeting folks that show interest in their wines.  Marco was one of those folks.  I enjoyed sharing some stories with him of my times living in Tuscany and traveling throughout the wine region and listening to to his passion for his wines.

Marco Fizialetti from Castello di Querceto
Marco Fizialetti ~ Castello di Querceto
Castello di Querceto has been in the Francois family since 1897.  Marco Francois at the beginning of the century started to make the estate more focused towards agriculture.  In 1978 his grandson, Alessandro, started to make some investment changes and during this time is when most of the vineyards were planted.  In 1924 they became one of the 33 founding members of the Consorzio del Chianti Classico.  Marco Fizialetti had met the daughter of Alessandro Francois and moved to the family's estate later marrying into the family.  He learned from Alessandro the traditions, history of the estate and its wines and today continues to improve the different terroirs and characteristics of the wine and the way it is produced over the 60 hectacres of land.  

I sampled wines from their Castello di Querceto line, which exclusively comes from the estate's vineyards.  They also had wines under the Querceto brand which are bottled in Greve, but the grapes are sourced outside the Chianti Classico region so therefore they have to labeled an IGT.  I enjoyed their Chianti Classico Riserva, but when I got to their single vineyards and cru wines, including all their Super Tuscans, it was a whole other tasting.  I started with La Corte, their Super Tuscan from a specific 5 acres in Greve.  It is 100% Sangiovese that had nice body and balance to it being aged 12 months in barriques and at least 6 months in the bottle.  Then I moved on to two of their best wines in my opinion, 2007 Il Querciolaia, their Super Tuscan made of 65% Sangiovese and 35% Cabernet Sauvignon aged 18-20 months in barriques and at least 6 months in bottles, and lastly 2008 Il Sole di Alessandro, their other Super Tuscan produced 100% from Cabernet Sauvignon aged 20-24 months in barriques and also at least 6 months in bottles.  These wines had such complexity, depth and structure and the finish just lingered for enjoyment throughout my conversation with Marco.

Greve in Chianti, Tuscany
Greve in Chianti
For winemaking that has really only begun within the last 100 years, this estate has such fantastic wines, especially the Super Tuscans.  I would highly recommend splurging and enjoying one of these bottles mentioned above for a special occasion.  Although in my opinion any time you open a bottle such as these, that is the special occasion.   More to come from that night......

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