Chianti Days are Upon Us

Ok, so Chianti Days isn’t really a thing but I always seem to enjoy Chianti when the tempsDSCN2516 are cooler. Maybe it’s because it lends itself so beautifully to the hearty dishes of fall and winter, maybe it’s because my wine cellar temps really start to drop and resemble European wine temps more, meaning I can grab a bottle of red without pre-chilling or maybe it’s because they take me away to another place. Whatever the reason, as soon as the leaves begin to drop and blanket our deck and forest floor aka our backyard, I find myself filling my glass with that wonderful Italian wine.
This week seems to be the first official week of fall, although the calendar indicates it’s been fall for a full month now. Mornings in NE Georgia are in the mid-40’s, highs in the 60’s and this week we’ll have two consecutive mornings in the upper 30’s. Time to switch out the warm weather clothing and bedding for winter wear and time to switch out those wines too. Oh, I’ll still enjoy Rose’s and whites but I’ll be hitting the reds a lot more. This week I’m crazy for Chianti with three recent samples from Banfi. I’ll cover two of those wines in this post. Look for the third coming soon.

Chianti Classico Riserva Banfi Tuscany 2010
Deep ruby in color with aromas of plum and black cherry. Flavors are lush with ripe DSCN2517blackberry and currant with a hint of toasted vanilla bean in the finish. This isn’t your grandmother’s Chianti. I say that because on occasion I find Chianti to be so dry I feel like dust will come out of my mouth. This wine is well structured but tannins are supple and well balanced with the acidity.
Region: Chianti Classico, Tuscany, Italy
Varietal: Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, Canaiolo Nero
Acidity 5.5 g/l
Residual Sugar 1.6 g/l
Alcohol 13 %

We paired with cherry tomatoes made into mini Caprese salad, Kluskie Polish noodles with fresh basil pesto and Bohemian Smokies from Pataks Meats, a manufacturer of fine European meats. I love to eat with my fingers so meals like this are my favorite. I did use a fork for the noodles, which would have been a little messy.


Per tasting notes: The alcoholic fermentation with a medium period of maceration is followed by at least 2 years of aging, of which a minimum of 12 months is in slavonian oak barrels. The wine concludes its evolution with at least 6 months of bottle aging.

Placido Chianti Tuscany, Italy
Ruby red in the glass. Aromas of strawberry and what I refer to as Band-Aid smell. This aroma to me is a strong indicator of an old world style wine. Flavors are dry with astringent tannins loads of black fruits. It took some swirling for the flavors to open but I would expect this of this style of wine.
Placido ChiantiThis is your Italian Grandmother’s wine. My husband loves old world style, while I prefer new world so he loved this wine.
We paired with an eggplant, asparagus, mozzarella Panini with basil pesto. The wine really paired wonderfully with what I consider to be an adult version of the grilled cheese sandwich. Sorry no pictures of this delicious sandwich. I know, bad blogger but sometimes you just have to eat your food while it’s hot.

Region: Chianti Classico, Tuscany, Italy
Varietal: Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, Canaiolo Nero
Acidity 4.6 g/l
Alcohol 12.9 %

Per tasting notes: Maceration with the skins lasts for 8-12 days during primary fermentation. The grapes are pressed and a second fermentation takes place. The wine undergoes a malolactic fermentation and is then aged in temperature-controlled stainless-steel for five to six months before bottling.

Temps will be in the upper 30’s this week and I’m still working on harvesting and using the basil. Earlier in the week I made compound butter, Green Goddess Sauce and basil herb dressing. See my earlier post on the compound butter and basil dressing.
I did repot two of the plants and brought them inside for the winter. Last winter was so cold the rosemary didn’t survive. I’ve heard reports this winter will be colder. I may need an indoor greenhouse.

Tonight I’m making homemade gnocchi with beef stew and fall squash. My first attempt at gnocchi last year turned out really well. I used a fork to roll them and that was a little difficult so I may break down and purchase a gnocchi board. Any suggestions on where to find one on the cheap?


About Kellie Stargaard

Wine blogger
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