Chianti wine is known world-wide for its iconic Tuscan scenery and pastoral vineyards that produce delicious food-friendly red wine. This Sassabruna wine is made not far from Chianti in Maremma near the Italian sea coast. Grapes, growing conditions, and wine styles in these two regions are quite similar, and you’ll appreciate the great taste at a more affordable price found in the Maremma wine. This wine is mostly made from the Sangiovese grape, giving a true Tuscan taste of dark red berry and dried cherry fruitiness with savory over-tones of black tea, roasted tomato, cedar wood, and herbal sage. Some international varietals – Merlot and Syrah – are new to this wine area, and are added for fruit balance and a bit more juiciness and brighter flavor. I’ve tasted this 2011 vintage recently and was charmed by the soft ripe tannin and the concentration of fruit. This is a wine that connects with simple, rustic foods like meaty stew or roasted beef- comfort food for a warm night!