2012 Villa Antinori Chianti Classico Riserva SKU #1268931


JS 92 WE 91 RP 90
VN 90 WS 90
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Professional Reviews

Staff Reviews

  • Jim Barr
    By: Jim Barr
    K&L Staff Member
    I pointed out several months ago to Greg St.Clair, our Italian wine buyer, that he was an evil person, imposing horrible buying habits on most of us, including yours truly, at K&L. What drove me to this realization is that for the first time last year, I discovered that I have more Tuscan red wine (mostly Brunello and Rosso di Montalcino) in my wine room than I do Bordeaux. And, it is all his deceitful, conniving fault. He forced me into buying these wines, and, in reality, I am really grateful that he did; I have some incredibly great wines aging in that room. Well, I am adding this classic Antinori Riserva to that collection. Medium-deep ruby in color with dense, thick legs, the nose is opulent and powerful with red berry fruit driven characteristics, and mosswood, leathery, dusty notes with a touch of mild toastiness. Rich, broad, viscous, and distinctive in the mouth, all these qualities carry over nicely to a wine of incredible complexity, depth, and structure, yet with perfect balance. This Gem refuses to quit on its bright, lush finish. Both Rusty and I absolutely love this Riserva Gem and plan to put several cases in our wine room for future consideration. If you want to try it near-term, decant and air (of course!) for an hour or so, to give it time to really open up. A GREAT LONG-TERM VALUE!!! …..A K&L WINE MERCHANTS’ DIRECT IMPORT….. ***** 13.5% ABV *****
    Drink from 2020 to 2030
  • Alex Schroeder
    By: Alex Schroeder
    K&L Staff Member
    This wine is for me the embodiment of Old World elegance. It captures the savory Sangiovese flavors of cherries, raspberries and plum with subtle notes of spices and herbs. It has a soft earthy texture underlying rich, concentrated fruit and just a touch of acidity. Very well balanced, structured and, in a word, elegant.
  • Stefanie Juelsgaard
    By: Stefanie Juelsgaard
    K&L Staff Member
    This wine would be a wonderful introduction to the world of Chianti for anyone new to the variety or region. It is a lovely blend of red fruits and mild acidity, with soft tannins, and a lighter than expected mouthfeel. The earthy qualities are in no way overpowering in this wine, but add some structure and depth, which is perfect for someone used to drinking more fruit-forward wines. Because this Chianti is lighter bodied with cherry and raspberry notes predominant, I feel it can easily be enjoyed now with a few hours of decanting.
  • Greg St. Clair
    By: Greg St. Clair
    K&L Staff Member
    Tasting this wine was a revelation for me. I had felt in past vintages that Antinori had become too big, that they had lost their way as a top Chianti producer; this wine really shows they’re back on track! The nose is so pure, classic Sangiovese aromatics of wild cherry, earth, leather and a woodsy spice fill your nose. On the palate the wine carries those same aromatics and turns them into lively flavors. As the wine warms in your mouth it builds, opens and expands the spice and leather blossom and adds a complex layer to underscore the wild cherry. This wine is really built for the future; superb balance and structure. I opened mine and decanted it a couple of hours ahead of time and it just exploded. While built for the future it is so well balanced you can drink this wine easily now, as I did with my bottle! Try it with your favorite pasta or as I did with grilled pork chops! Kudos to Antinori for getting this fabulous Chianti Classico back on track!
    Drink from 2016 to 2022
  • David Driscoll
    By: David Driscoll
    K&L Staff Member
    It's been a while since I've tasted Chianti that balanced the softness of the wild cherry with the savory, meatier flavors this well. Everything about the Antinori Riserva's profile is harmonious and fluid in its flavor. It's equal parts old school and new school, equal parts fruit and leather, equal parts structure and suppleness. It's a complex Chianti, one that expands beyond the simple table wine elements we adore so much and blooms into a more expansive experience. I could drink this with pasta, with a steak, with pork tacos, or just on its own after a long day at work. You can cellar it, or you can decant it and enjoy it now. This is a can-do Chianti.
  • Rachel Vogel
    By: Rachel Vogel
    K&L Staff Member
    Fresh cherry, dry earth and savory notes on the nose become integrated and elegant as the wine opens up in the glass. These flavors are complemented on the palate with the polished and light structure of the wine. At first, the ripe fruit is the star of the show but as time progresses the spice really begins to shine. Throughout it all, an underline of classic Sangiovese savoriness gives depth to each sip.
  • John Downing
    By: John Downing
    K&L Staff Member
    After a long absence from our sales floors, the Villa Antinori Chianti Riserva is back in stock. This iconic label remains one of the benchmark wines for Antinori and we love the 2012. Made from ninety percent Sangiovese and ten percent Cabernet, it boasts a seamless palate of red and black fruit flavors with ample underlying acidity and plenty of length. It's a bit shy when first opened but fleshes out perfectly with proper aeration and there's nothing out of place. Simply delicious.
  • Mike Parres
    By: Mike Parres
    K&L Staff Member
    This is simply beautiful. The opulent, forward fruit that is typical of the year is present, but a firm sense of structure keeps things from going over the top. If that sounds appealing you’ll love this wine. Dark red fruit, flowers, minerals and spices come together beautifully in this Riserva. Buy a couple, it will keep.


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