A concentrated, plush red with black berry fruit and meaty characters. The seamlessly textured palate opens up to show dense fruit and complex layers of leather and spice - with lovely, fine, integrated tannins.
A large estate, with 180 hectares of immaculately maintained vineyards in Castelnuovo Berardenga, which lies adjacent to its sister property Villa la Pagliaia. The wines at both are made by Leonardo Bellacini, a master of the 'non interventionist' approach, giving classic expressions of high quality Sangiovese, restrained and complex and with great balance and depth. The secret lies in high quality grapes from exceptional vineyards, driven by an intensive research programme, in particular by selection of the best naturally occuring clones. The resulting wines are understated but satisfying, unencumbered by new oak, Cabernet or flashy winemaking.
In the Vineyard
Il Grigio is made from a selection of the best Sangiovese grapes from the Chianti Classico vineyards on the Agricola San Felice Estates in Castelnuovo Berardenga, Siena. The vineyards are at altitudes of 350/400 m. above sea level and the soil is mostly limestone and loam. The vines are trained using the Guyot and Spurred Cordon methods. The 2003 harvest took place between 14 September and 6 October.
In the Winery
The must was fermented on the skins for 18-20 days at 28-30 degrees Centigrade. This was followed by malolactic fermentation in stainless steel vats. 80% of the wine was matured in Slavonian oak barrels (60/90 Hl) for 24 months, while the remaining 20% was aged in 225 litre French oak casks.
2007 Vintage (14.92 points/ 20): Violets, black cherry, blackberry, game and oak on the nose. Rich, plump, lively palate with admirable acidity and big tannins. Youthful, vivacious and complete. Decanter, May 2011-04-07.
2007 Vintage: "....comes across as soft and pliant, very much in the style of the vintage. A warm, open bouquet leads to succulent ripe cherries, flowers and spices, all of which flow through nicely to the enveloping finish. Today the juiciness of the fruit makes Il Grigio very attractive, but readers who prefer more tertiary complexity will want to wait for a few years. 90 points." Wine Advocate, August 2010
San Felice Il Grigio Chianti Classico Riserva 2009: “A pure expression of Sangiovese, the 2009 Chianti Classico Riserva Il Grigio shows the inner warmth and richness that is characteristic of the Castelnuovo Berardenga subzone of the famous Tuscan appellation. Balsam herbs and eucalyptus oil appear at first and slowly give way to black fruit, cherry cola, violet and Spanish cedar. It shows an extremely polished feel in the mouth. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2028. 93+ points” Monica Larner, The Wine Advocate (#208), 29th August 2013.