The Story Continues: Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Riserva Ducale Oro 2014 wins Gambero Rosso’s Tre Bicchieri

The Riserva Ducale Oro label was first made in 1947 as a testament to Ruffino’s best chapters in Chianti Classico: his adopted home. It is a Gran Selezione label, only produced during the best vintages as determined by strict standards of quality. If the grapes are deemed worth, then the Sangiovese is carefully picked by hand in Ruffino’s estate vineyards and then are carefully turned into this award-winning label.

A spring with cold temperatures and a rainy, hail-filled summer cast doubts on the release of the 2014 vintage. However, man and nature came together in time. Carefully timed treatments to protect the vines coupled with a few days of hot weather in the well exposed vineyards right before harvest resulted in healthy grapes. The harvest was selective to ensure that only the healthiest, ripest grapes were picked. It was the kind of fortune that can only be celebrated. A difficult vintage that at the same time reveals the winery’s true character. This vintage embodies the care and attention Ruffino applies to the management of their vineyards and the production of their wines.

The vineyards
Riserva Ducale Oro is made from a selection of Sangiovese grapes from Ruffino’s Gretole, Santedame and Casavecchia di Cagnano estate vineyards. All the vineyards are situated in the most prestigious growing area of Chianti Classico, la Conca d’Oro, in the Municipality of Castellina in Chianti.

The soils are mainly comprised of clay-limestone and clay-sand that are rich in galestro and schist. The vineyards equally benefit from good southern exposure on hills with an altitude that vary between 250 to 400 metres above sea level.

Winemaking and tasting notes
Alcoholic fermentation takes around 10 days in stainless steel vats that are controlled at 28°C which is then followed by 15 days of maceration on the skins and a malolactic fermentation. The wine was then aged for more than 36 months, 12 of which occurred in large oak barrels and then another 12 in small barriques and tonneaux.

Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Riserva Ducale Oro 2014 is a deep, ruby red colour with an intense and immediate boquet of floral notes which opens to reveal scents of dried fruit and spices in the nose. On the palate there is a persistent lingering of small fruits, tobacco and spices. Ripe and silky tannins build a good structure to this wine and lends potential for a long ageing, although this elegant wine is ready to be enjoyed!

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