Chianti is arguably Italy's most well-known wine that in the past was commonly bottled in those now iconic straw covered flasks. Named after the region within Tuscany in central Italy, Chianti wines are red wines made predominately from the Sangiovese grape variety. Within the broader area of Chianti are many sub regions, one of which is 'Classico' from which this example from Gabbiano comes from and as such is labelled as a 'Chianti Classico' wine. Being from within the Chianti region and by meeting strict quality controls that includes a panel of experts tasting the wine before bottling - this wine is granted Italy's highest possible ranking, known as DOCG ((Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita).
This 2011 vintage from Gabbiano has a classically beautiful cherry red color. The aroma is rather restrained but displays hints of pepper and spice, some woody notes and just a hint of dark fruit. On the palate this wine is medium bodied with a good balance of tannin and acid. This is definitely not a fruity wine and is quite dry with a peppery hit on the palate. It is drinking close to its peak now and not something to stow away in the cellar. It will be much better enjoyed as an accompaniment to food and will pair really well with pizza, tomato based pasta dishes and it also went amazingly well with steak au poivre.
The Gabbiano 2011 Chianti can be found for an average price of $10 at many wine retailers.