Castello di Ama

Castello di Ama Riserva – 2005


Castello di Ama

Castello di Ama was founded in 1976, and is located in Gaiole in Chianti, within the additional geographical unit of the same name (UGA), located in the heart of Tuscany. It is located about 12 miles northeast of Siena in the hills of Gaiole. This is the heart of Chianti Classico, a bucolic rolling landscape of woods, vineyards and olive groves.

The estate is currently helmed by CEO Lorenza Sebasti, a member of the second generation of one of the four founding families. Marco Pallanti, who was once the President of the Chianti Classico Consorzio, has been the winemaker and technical director at Castello di Ama since 1982.

The goal of the estate is to have each bottle of Castello di Ama express the uniqueness of the terroir, and be an authentic expression of the vintage. Ama has practiced sustainable viticulture since the end of the 1990s, and recently received Equalitas (Italy) certification.

The Wine

Vineyard Profile
  • 161 acre specialised vineyards, enrolled in the official Chianti Classico Registry
  • Altitude: 1280 – 1750 feet
  • Soils: Calcareous-clay, full of pebbles
  • Vineyard Age: Plots planted between 1974 – 1978 have a density of 1200 vines per acre; those planted from 1996 on display a density of 2150 vines/acre
  • Vine Training Systems: Vertically-trellised, trained to the open lyre system and pruned to Guyot and spurred cordon
  • All varieties grafted onto 420A rootstock
Harvest Notes
  • Cold February with rain and frequent snows
  • Average April temperatures rose to above average in May
  • June heat and humidity gave way to hot, dry summer
  • Rains in August, September and October
  • Hand harvested October 5 – 13 into small boxes with careful berry sorting in vineyard and at cellar
  • Each variety vinified separately in stainless steel tanks at 91ºF with numerous daily pumpovers for 25 days
  • Aged 12 months in 20% new oak barriques
Winemaker's Notes

Deep and lively ruby red color. Bouquet of flowers and small ripe red fruits with a captivating intensity. On the palate it is spicy with notes of berries, concentrated, powerful and at the same time time endowed with notable elegance.

Wine Summary

80% Sangiovese, 20% Malvasia Nera, Merlot, Cabernet Franc; alcohol: 13%; estate vineyards in the Chianti Classico Register between 1280 – 1750 feet; hand harvested October 5 – 13 into small crates with strict berry selection; varieties vinified separately in stainless steel tanks at 91ºF for 25 days with daily pumpovers; aged 12 months in 20% new oak barriques.

Technical Information
  • 80% Sangiovese, 20% Malvasia Nera, Merlot, Cabernet Franc
  • Alcohol: 13%


90 Points

The 2005 Chianti Classico Castello di Ama is a terrific effort. It offers incredible purity and vibrancy in its core of sweet dark cherries and refined, elegant tannins. The wine shows nice density buffered by firm tannins that will need another year or two to soften. The wine clearly benefits from the addition of the fruit that normally goes into the estate’s top Chianti Classico bottings [Vigneto Bellavista and Vigneto La Casuccia], which were not made in 2005.

© Wine Advocate, June, 2008

General Info

Country Italy
Region Tuscany
Appellation(s) Chianti Classico
Proprietor/CEO Lorenza Sebasti
Founded 1974
Winemaker Marco Pallanti
Annual Production 25,000 9L cases
Farming (Sustainable, organic, biodynamic) Sustainable certified by Equalitas Italy