2006 Leonetti Walla Walla Valley Sangiovese

SKU #1046236 92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2006 Sangiovese is dark ruby-colored with a fragrant nose of cigar box, damp earth and smoky black cherry. Supple, ripe, and intense on the palate, it has plenty of savory, spicy cherry fruit, some underlying structure, and exceptional length. (JM)  (10/2009)

92 points Wine Enthusiast

 Held back for an extra year, this new Sangiovese from Leonetti was aged in 500 liter ovals. The vines are now a decade old, the flavors deep and dusty, with ripe and mature tannins and hints of coffee and anise. Good grip and focus, with a pure through-line and early suggestions of Brunello-like aging capability.  (9/2009)

92 points Wine Spectator

 Polished, refined and open-textured, brimming with strawberry, raspberry and peppery floral flavors that flow easily through the long, expressive finish.  (11/2009)

91 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Good bright red-ruby. Complex nose melds cherry, licorice, tar, leather, dried herbs and smoky oak. Sweet, concentrated and nicely fresh, with flavors of red berries, licorice, milk chocolate, smoke and wild herbs sexed up by a suggestion of exotic fruits. An enticing edge of acidity and firm tannins give this complex Sangiovese good backbone for further development. I appreciate this wine all the more, now that truly interesting Sangiovese from our West Coast seems to be dying out.  (11/2009)

Wine & Spirits

 Dark and savory, with a scent of rye and caramel, this wine has a plummy core of flavor that's grounded by firm oak tannins. Give it time to knit, then serve with an herb-crusted pork chop.  (12/2009)

K&L Notes

Add Sangiovese to the list of grapes that do remarkably well in Washington. Still a rarity, this wine has a nice nod to the textbook red fruit you'd expect from a Chianti, with hints of oiled leather and dusty earth, too. And like a Chianti or a Brunello, the tannins are firm now, in the wine's youth, and the acidity so exuberant it screams for food like a five-year-old.

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Varietal:

Sangiovese

- The most widely planted grape in Italy is Sangiovese, a high-acid grape with moderate to high tannins, apparent earthiness and subtle fruit. It is thought to have originated in Tuscany and its name, which translates to "blood of Jove," leads historians to believe it may date all the way back to the Etruscan period, though historical mentions only go as far back as the early 1700s. Though planted all over modern Italy, the most significant wines made from Sangiovese still come from Tuscany: Chianti and Brunello di Montalcino. Sangiovese must make up 75% of a blend from the Chianti DOCG t be labeled as such, traditionally allowing for Canaiolo, Trebbiano and Malvasia for the remainder, though more recently small proportions of Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot have been allowed. In Brunello di Montalcino the wine must be made entirely of Sangiovese. Prugnolo is Montepulciano's name for Sangiovese, and it is used there for the Vino Nobile di Montepulciano wines. In the DOC of Carmignano Sangiovese can be blended with 20% Cabernet Sauvignon. There are also Super Tuscans, IGT wines that blend Sangiovese with large proportions of Cabernet or Merlot. Elsewhere in Italy it is a workhorse grape, though it does find some success (though not the longevity) in the Montefalco and Torgiano wines of Umbria as well as the foundation of Rosso Piceno and a significant element of Rosso Conero from the Marches. Like Nebbiolo, Sangiovese has struggled to find footing outside of Italy, though in recent years California wineries have been having better fortune with grape plantings in the Sierra Foothills/El Dorado County, as well as Sonoma County and the Central Coast.
Country:

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.
Sub-Region:

Washington

- Washington has become one of the most important wine producing states in the United States, and development continues to grow rapidly. In 1969, when California was exploding as a wine producer, Washington had only two wineries, but by 2000 that number had passed 100. Most of Washington's grape crop goes to uses other than wine. Merlot and Chardonnay have been the most successful in Washington. It's interesting to note that Washington's prime wine regions are located at 46° north, along the same latitude as the legendary French wine districts of Bordeaux and Burgundy. During the summer, Washington averages more than two hours more sunlight each day compared to California.