La Foglia Vino Rosso $5.99

Bottled by: Chianti Trambusti S.R.I. – Firenze Italy
11.5% ABV
Purchased: 11-6-2014 Corvallis, OR (during wine sale) SRP $14.99

FullSizeRenderFirenze, Italy (also known as Florence) is in the heart of the Tuscany wine region. I’m a fan of what is being commonly called the “Super Tuscan” wine (a non-standard Italian blend, leaning towards the modern “rich” wine style…including varietals that aren’t allowed in Chianti. I.E. Merlot, Cabernet, Syrah etc.) Many times, Super Tuscans have Sangiovese as a component to the blend. However, my personal favorites tend to be the Italian grapes done in the traditional Bordeaux blend style. In any case, I am a fan, and one of my favorite ST producers is Poggio Mandorli. So imagine my surprise when I clicked on the Chianti Trambusti website to research this wine, and saw that they also produced one of my favorite Super Tuscan brands. That sealed the deal for me and I bought the wine.

Until that point, I’d been hesitant to buy it because it is NV. To me, a non-vintage wine is more of a “Frankenstein’s Monster” of a wine. You never know what you are going to get. Sometimes it’s great and you find yourself a major bargain (often NV’s are lower in price compared to their single vintage counterparts) and other times you want to flee to the hills and/or destroy it by fire.

There are no notes online regarding this wine. The bottle has very little info as well:
Color: Red
Flavour: Persistent, Fruity, Vinous
Taste: Dry, Soft, Well Balanced

So now you have as much actual info as I, to this point. From here on out, it’s simply personal opinion and/or conjecture. And starting with conjecture, I’m about 98% sure this wine is at least 68-70% Sangiovese (maybe more); as to the rest of the blend, I don’t know. The taste makes it seem like there might be a bit of Merlot but the body weight doesn’t lend itself to that conclusion.

Tasting notes:
Color: Clear garnet with highlights of purple
Body: Light-Light/Medium
Nose: Bright cherry, fig…a hint of plum and smoke.
Taste: We’d call this a 75/25 balance between a fruit forward Sangiovese blend and a “rustic” Sangiovese blend (the difference being that the rustic is drier, smokier and has grippier tannins while the fruit forward is just as it sounds). While the predominant taste is the cherry and fig that you get on the nose, as well as some underlying plum, the tannins in this one are nice and firm; black tea style. There is also a vague hint of smoke. It’s definitely not “cigar box” but it is faintly evident as the wine lingers on the tongue.

I know the SRP on this one is only $15 but it’s a mildly complex wine for that price, let alone the $5.99 Grocery Outlet price. If you are a fan of Sangiovese (or Chianti…although the body is slightly heavier than the Chianti I’ve tried) or a fruity but dry Italian red, this might be right up your alley.

I called the Corvallis GO before I wrote this, just to see if it was still available. I’m told that they have some on the shelves and 4 cases in the back. I’m glad too. I think I’ll be picking up another couple of bottles.


8 thoughts on “La Foglia Vino Rosso $5.99

  1. weinish

    Purchased 6 bottles today at GO Oakland. It was all that was there. If it isn’t good I’ll return the rest. But I needed a $5 wine that made sense right now.

    1. permiesworld Post author

      I hope you like it Weinish. I just had another GO Sangiovese today that made me wish I had another bottle of this one. But who knows, re: bottle variation. Hoping you have a good experience.

    2. EHL

      Hey Weinish…have you been following the blog concerning the Russian Hill Winery PN and Syrah offerings now at both Oakland and Berkeley?

      These appear to be upscale, highly-rated wines selling for $7, a fraction of their retail worth, but you have to ask for them as they aren’t on the shelf at Oakland.

    1. permiesworld Post author

      Wow, that was extremely interesting. The last information I read on Chianti said that it had to be primarily Sangiovese (I thought 80% but I could be wrong), had to use some white grapes and prohibited international varieties such as Cab, Merlot & Syrah. So your information is more up to date than mine. And, heartening to me…I think I might like it better with the new options. Thank you for the link. I think I’ll be exploring newer vintages (and more specifically Chianti Classico, since they discuss it being more medium in body) in the future, just to see how different it is from my past experience.

      1. seedboy

        Still 80%. White wine no longer required, I believe it is not allowed.
        I spent a lot of time in Tuscan wineries this summer. it was rough work.

  2. BargainWhine

    I saw this today at the Oakland, CA, store and declined to get it for the reasons you point out: non-vintage, no indication of which grapes and / or which DOC or DOCG (designated region) it’s from. Thanks for trying it!

    1. permiesworld Post author

      I was really hesitant, BW. I got out a second wine just in case I didn’t like this one. Full disclosure, I’m not a Chianti fan. I like Sangiovese in blends but again, lean more towards the non-standard Tuscan blends. I did like this though. There’s enough body (one of my main issues with Chianti) to make it more substantial (and even then, in body it’s like a light Pinot Noir, not a substantial wine) and not taste “thin”. Flavor is good. I was waiting for “kool-aid” (I’ve had really horrible Chianti so that’s all I have to compare it…thin and kool-aid) but didn’t get that at all. This was a wine that my friend would say I “circle and poked” a lot before trying. LOL! Didn’t trust it a bit. That’s why I wasn’t sure it would be still available, it tastes nice so I figured it’d be gone with all the others that tasted good and were scooped up.


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