Last week was the Chianti Classico Collection at the Stazione Leopolda here in Florence. This is a Chianti lovers dream tasting event, with hundreds of wineries presenting their new wines, many of them with barrel samples or wine that was just recently bottled. I spent a lot of time with Franceso Gioffreda from Casa al Vento whose "Aria" won a Top 100 Wine award this year, and right next to him was my friend Fabrizio Benedetti from Casa Emma, makers of one of my favorite Chiantis (the wineries are presented in alphabetical order).
I am not a professional sommelier and honestly can't taste many more than a dozen wines before losing my palate a bit - but this article (in several parts and with some video) from Intravino sums up many of the wines - I don't agree with all their scoring - but what is amazing was something that a friend mentioned: there really is no bad wine at an event like this. The overall quality of the region couldn't be higher - and it is really coming down to your personal preference when choosing a wine with the Black Rooster on the neck. Personally, my palate has been gravitating for some time to simpler wines, the Classicos over the Riservas, wines that respect their localities and microclimates, and that are not over aged or over oaked. I will try to talk about a couple of specific wines this week in following posts. Salut!
Here are some more photos from someone's flickr account: http://www.flickr.com/photos/burde/sets/72157623445544974/