Castello dei Rampolla Vigna d'Alceo:
[kahs-tehl-lo day (l)ram-pol-lah]
The first generation of Super-Tuscans Sassicaia,
Ornellaia, and Solaiaseems to brand its prowess
with that signature aia. The Super-Tuscan
line only begins there, though. Several of the second
generation have taken a place right beside these legends,
with Castello dei Rampollas Sammarco quietly leading
the reign of the descendants.
Castello dei Rampollas founder, Alceo di Napoli
Rampolla, was a foremost advocate of Cabernet, prominently
celebrated in Sammarco, a predominantly Cabernet-based
blend (95% Cabernet Sauvignon & 5% Sangiovese)
that he conceived in cooperation with Giacomo Tachis
(Sassicaia, Solaia, Argiano). While Alceo endured
fierce criticism for advocating the synergy between
the Panzano area of Chianti and the varietal of Cabernet
Sauvignon, his position was vindicated in the debut
Sammarcos (1980) critical reception.
In 1996, the di Napolis introduced Vigna dAlceo
(Alceos Vineyard) in homage to their late father.
The grapes for this cru wine are grown exclusively
in the Alceo vineyard located in Greve, one of the
five original townships for the production of Chianti.
While Sammarco has become part of the Super-Tuscan
establishment, dAlceos intense marriage
of opulence and power has given it cult status, placing
it in the realm of Masseto and Messorio. No other
in its class achieves such a stunning and provocative
expressiondelivering a lush density that belies
the wines intricate and profoundly serious structure.
More potent than the most power-hungry of cult Cabernets,
dAlceo acquires a sleek and spicy dimension
from a small percentage of Petit Verdotgiving
it a character that simply eludes pure Cabs.
Buy Vigna d'Alceo
Producer: Castello dei Rampolla
Varietal(s): Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot
Commune: Greve in Chianti
Altitude: 360 meters
Exposure: South, Southwest
Classification: Toscana IGT
First Year: 1996
Bottle Production: 20,000
More Landmark Wines:
Tenuta San Guido
2004 Vigna d'Alceo