Castello di Ama

Montebuoni Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG – 2020

Region: ITALY - TUSCANY

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

Castello di Ama purchased and replanted the Montebuoni vineyard in 1997, nestled on the slope of the hill parallel to Bellavista vineyard. Managed since then following the 3-pillar conception of sustainability: social, economic, and environmental. 2018 was the debut wine from this vineyard.

  • Altitude: 1375-1610 feet/420–500 meters
  • Soil: Clay and calcareous
  • Exposure: North-West/South-East
  • Vine Planting Density: 5200 vines/ha
  • Vine Training System: vertical trellis with single Guyot
  • Clonal Selections: Sangiovese CH21, CH22, CC2002, CC2004; Merlot 181 & 343; Rootstock 420A
Harvest Notes
  • 1st quarter of 2020 without winter – clear, sunny days and no snow
  • March brought lower temperatures and slowed growth
  • Warmth of summer and soil moisture led to good maturation
  • End August rain and September cool nights and warm days created good ripening and aromatic development
  • Hand harvesting began mid-September, ended October 8
  • Each variety fermented separately using only indigenous yeasts at in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks from 82–86ºF
  • Manual pumpovers for Sangiovese, total cuvaison for 24 days
  • After racking, malolactic fermentation in oak barriques of thin grain
  • Blended after malolactic fermentations complete
  • Aged in barrique for 12 months
  • Bottled in Spring
Winemaker's Notes

The deep ruby red is highlighted with purple. Fruit-forward. aromas of blueberry, blackberry, raspberry and currant. In the mouth: refined and balanced, harmonic with a  long-lasting aromatic profile.  A wonderfully pure expression of elegance.

Wine Summary

The 3rd vintage of Riserva Montebuoni; 95% Sangiovese, 5% Merlot; alcohol: 13.5%; vineyard purchased and replanted 1997, on slope of hill parallel to Bellavista vineyard; hand harvested between mid-September  & October 8; varieties vinified separately using only indigenous yeasts; 24 days cuvaison with manual pumpovers; blended after malolactic fermentations; aged 12 months in fine-grained oak barriques; bottled in Spring.

Technical Information
  • 95% Sangiovese, 5% Merlot
  • Alcohol: 13.5%

Reviews

94 Points

Very pretty aromas with flowers and perfumes as well as the classic cherry character of sangiovese. Medium body, with ultra-fine tannins and a finesse and focus. Lovely now.

jamessuckling.com, August, 2023

92 Points

High-toned and racy, offering blackberry, plum, earth and hints of chocolate and spices. Though light in weight, this red shows fine intensity and a chalky feel on the long finish. Sangiovese and Merlot. Best from 2025 through 2038.

Wine Spectator, November, 2023

92 Points

The 2020 Chianti Classico Riserva Montebuoni offers a compelling mix of dark Ama fruit intermingled with a good bit of energy. Dark fruit, leather, spice, graphite and dried herbs are nicely delineated. This is an especially savory, at times somber, Riserva with a good bit of aromatic intensity and some tannin that needs time to resolve. 2023 – 2035

Vinous - Antonio Galloni, August, 2023

17+ Points

Gaiole. 95% Sangiovese, 5% Merlot.
Lustrous, youthful ruby. Concentrated nose with minerally, saline hints. Elegant, fresh raspberry that is sappy and light of touch. A pretty wine and ready now. 2024 – 2032

JancisRobinson.com, March, 2024

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