What is Sangiovese?
Sangiovese is the most planted red grape variety in Italy, today most prominently associated with Tuscany, where its prolific presence spans the region’s full quality spectrum.
What does Sangiovese taste like?
Sangiovese is known for its tangy cherry fruit accompanied by savoury flavours of tea, dried herbs and chestnuts. With age, notes of leather, incense and autumn leaves become more prominent. When over-cropped, Sangiovese can taste very thin and dusty, while many under-ripe examples display a rustic, farmyard character. The finest examples show riper, juicier fruit with great depth and intensity. The high-end Supertuscan movement has seen Sangiovese blended with Bordeaux varieties and matured in smaller French oak barrels, often creating a powerful, oak-influenced style. Brunello di Montalcino is renowned for a similarly concentrated, tannic expression of 100% Sangiovese.
Where is Sangiovese from?
Sangiovese was long believed to have been an ancient variety native to Tuscany. However genetic analysis points to close DNA links with several southern Italian grapes, an origin supported by the grape’s late-ripening characteristic that can prove problematic in cooler parts of Tuscany.
Where does Sangiovese grow?
Sangiovese is grown all over central Italy and is the main grape variety of Tuscany. The variety can also be found as far north as the Veneto and right down to Campania. Sangiovese was transported abroad by Italian immigrants, giving the variety a low-key presence in California, Washington State, Argentina and Australia.
Famous Sangiovese regions:
- Brunello di Montalcino, Chianti Classico & Vino Nobile de Montepulciano, Tuscany, Italy
Sangiovese translates from the Italian as “Blood of Jupiter”, the Roman king of the gods.
Our selection of great Sangiovese
- Soldera Case Basse (de-classified Brunello di Montalcino), Tuscany
- Isole e Olena, Chianti Classico, Tuscany
- Dal Zotto, King Valley, Australia
- Leonetti, Walla Walla, Washington State