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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

2004 Tramonto’s Red Chianti

This is the namesake wine of Rick Tramonto. Rick owns the ultra high end restaurant Tru and you may have recently seen him on Iron Chef with his partner Gale Gand. He recently opened three restaurants in Wheeling and we picked this up after eating breakfast at Osteria di Tramonto ( This one ran me $18. The cork says Casa Vinicola Dreolino.

I get some raspberry and earth on the nose.

Cherry, cinammon, earth, funk, black tea, and medium tannins. I’ve never tasted black tea in wine before and this one just screams it. I typically expect a somewhat sharp acidic bite from Chianti and this does not have one at all - it’s fairly smooth. We had this with some baked mostaccioli and Boca sausage and it went extremely well.

The finish brings out some nice herbal and earthy notes.

Is it worth $18? Human nature leads to bias, and just by knowing what it is, I know I’m probably giving this more of a chance than I normally would...if the label said “Gabbiano” instead of “Tramonto,” how would I feel? It’s an inherent problem with not pouring wine blind.

At the very least, this is worthwhile as a souvenir or a gift for that special foodie in your life who couldn’t be there. I feel this is almost certainly the finest straight up Chianti I’ve had and if this was on the menu by the bottle for even $30 I'd have it with dinner.

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