The Tuscan winemaker Dievole is best known for its top-shelf Chianti Classico. It also produces a line of value-priced wines like the 2008 Dievolino Sangiovese di Toscana (about $10 at wine-savvy markets), a vibrant and light-bodied red with a big burst of fruit that the winemaker describes as "Chianti Classico in its infancy."
This lively little wine starts off with plenty of blackberry and a little rose-scented fig on the nose and delivers on the promise of big fruit as a tsunami of ripe blackberry washes over the tongue. The fruit is sweetened a bit with bass notes of blackberry jam and dark chocolate. Oddly but agreeably, a nibble of prune comes in for the finale on a medium-long clean finish.
If you are an oenophile or just a rabid fan of all things Tuscan, why not drive yourself crazy with an online tour of the Villa Dievole Hotel & Wine Resort in the Chianti Hills south of Florence at villa-dievole.com? We were practically packing our bags as we drooled over the place.
At home, we would pair this everyday wine with pasta in red sauce, grilled lamb chops or pork chops, or maybe a robust antipasto featuring cured Italian meats — prosciutto, mortadella or bresaola — and roasted peppers.
By Colette and John Bancroft. She is the Times' book editor, and he is a freelance writer specializing in food, wine and travel.