With this $15 Tuscan red blend, I’ve initiated the research program for our upcoming 7th WineKnow event on the “World’s Greatest Wine Values.”
The UK’s premier wine magazine, Decanter, awarded this wine a stunning 93 point score. (In fact, they gave it a 18.5 score – out of 20 – but most wine retailers just multiply that score by five to make it comparable to everyone else’s 100-point scale.)
That means that this wine cost $0.16 per point – one of the lowest prices-per-point I’ve seen. In other words, this wine offers incredible value compared to other high-scoring wines.
Decanter wrote that the Icario boasts a “classic Sangiovese nose of red cherries and earthy notes. Rich and juicy mouth-feel, with velvety tannins and fresh acidity.”
I agree. It’s easy, true to its appellation, balanced and delicious! This one is definitely going into the next WineKnow lineup!
Tonight I happened to make spaghetti with marinara sauce and crumbled Italian-style sausage, which just cried out for a local wine like this.
BTW: I much prefer Decanter’s easy-to-understand reviews compared to the often ridiculous comparisons (Meyer Lemon? Damson Plum?) and fanciful allusions (a sighing odalisque?) in US wine mags.
- This is an IGT (Indicazione Geografica Tipica) wine from Toscana that is a blend of 70% Sangiovese, 20% Teroldego and 10% Merlot.
- In Italy, the quality pyramid goes DOCG –> DOC –> IGT.
- With so much Sangiovese, why isn’t it labeled Chianti? They could charge a lot more money, right?
- One reason is the Merlot. By regulation, this ‘foreign’ grape is not allowed in Chianti wines.
- Another reason is likely the location or locations where the grapes were sourced. If they were all sourced from Chianti Classico or any of the famous sub-regions, they would shout this out on the label.
- Instead, this is likely a blend that includes grapes grown in non-Chianti areas of Tuscany. (I later learned that the winery is based in Montepulciano, and also produces Vino Nobile di Montepulciano and Rosso di Montepulciano! The modern winery looks like a great place to visit!)
- In any cases, the inclusions of the Merlot means that they couldn’t label the wine as Chianti Classico even if ALL the grapes were grown in the Chianti Classico region!