[Insider Tip] Guado ‘De Gemoli – Chiappini

From now on I will be sharing some insider tips (tagged as “insider tips”) containing wines I recommend. Most wines and winemakers have already a great track record but are still quite  unknown for the general public. Stay tuned for these great assets for your wine cellar.

Today we present this 2017 Guado ‘De Gemoli by the Chiappini winery, a delicious Bordeaux style red that can measure itself with the finest wine in Bolgheri (land of the Super Tuscans). Well-known “super tuscan” wines like Ornellaia, Solaia, Gaja and Tignanello made this region famous since the 1990’s, but there are more great wines as the Chiappini family shows us.

Nilo and Rosa Chiappini started farming in the region in the 1950’s but it was not until the 1990’s (when the first “super tuscans” saw the light and the DOC Bolgheri was recognized) that the family moved their focus to winemaking. By that time Giovanni (Nilo and Rosa’s son) had taken over the company, bringing their first wine on the market in 1999. Subsequently Giovanni’s daughter Martina entered the company in 2013, working together with her father. The family now owns 27 hectares of land (of which 15 hectares consist of vineyards) and produces 100% organically. Their yearly wine production is around 80,000 bottles.

This blend consists of Cabernet Sauvignon (70%), Cabernet Franc (15%) and Merlot (15%). The grapes come from two different vineyards owned by the family; Le Grottine and Felciaino. An interesting fact is that the two vineyards are adjacent of those of Tenuta dell’Ornellaia (producer of Ornellaia) and Tenuta San Guido (producer of Sassicaia), two of Italy’s most famous wine makers. Soils for these particular vineyards consist of sand, clay, chalk and the characteristical Bolgheri conglomerate rock. The first vintage of this wine is 2000 but the vines and vineyard (Le Grottine) of this label date back to 1978 (Le Grottine) and 1986 (Felciaino).

The Merlot grapes are harvested in the beginning of September and the Cabernet Sauvignon at the start of October. In the next step the grapes are fermented separately in stainless steel tanks (at a controlled temperature), after which they undergo a second (malolactic) fermentation for 18 months in (French) oak barriques. 15% of the barriques was new, the rest was used for the second or third time.

Lesser known as a name does not mean poorer quality, as the critics consistently rate the Chiappini wines in the top league. Falstaff rewarded this wine with 98/100 points in 2016 and Decanter gave the 2017 vintage 94 points. In 2013 Guado ‘De Gemoli got the maximum score of 100/100 by Wine Enthusiast. Expectations for the (Fallstaff) 2017 rating are high, with a hot summer that helped the grapes to ripe really well.

Aging potential for this wine is excellent (~20 years with recommend drinking starting about 2-3 years from now), which makes this wine a great cellar buy to enjoy in the upcoming decades. Great work by the Chiappini family, making them and the Bolgheri region proud!

More about this wine in an upcoming tasting review, so stay tuned.

Insider Tip - Guado ‘De Gemoli