Ripanera 2009 Chianti Classico

Chianti Classico DOCG, Tuscany, Italy; 13% ABV
imported by Halby Marketing, Inc., Sonoma, CA
$6 at the Richmond, CA, store

ripanera_2009_chianticlassicoI had been interested in this wine, but was prompted to finally try one after Seedboy wrote that his bottle of this wine was literally vinegar.  My bottle, courtesy of Richmond GO owner / operator Sopheap Yin, was not vinegary at all, and was in fact a solidly good wine.

On the first day, it needed a couple hours’ air to show tart red cherry fruit that showed a good bit of orange and herbs, pretty good but unexciting wine.  On the second day, having just put the cork back in the top of the bottle, darker red cherry fruit came out, giving a pleasant impression of greater ripeness, but of less complexity.  On the third day, however, the fruit and the complexity came forth and integrated nicely, becoming really quite tasty.  It still was not an amazing wine, but it was good and well made for the price, and certainly not too old.

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17 thoughts on “Ripanera 2009 Chianti Classico

    1. the connasewer

      I have to question the veracity of the few people who said the 09 Ripanera CC was undrinkable. You will get bottle variation within cases occasionally. I have extensive experience buying/tasting Italian wine going back to the 80’s (worked in the Boston biz!) and the Ripanera is excellent. That is factoring in the age and refinement. I would not be drinking it if it wasn’t. In any event if you think the bottle is “bad” return it to the store and they will replace it.

      Reply
      1. seedboy

        My bottle was undrinkable, unless you really like acetic acid. I bought some of the Frescobaldi 2005 Chianti instead, it cost less and has no bottle variation.

        Reply
      2. yamoinca

        Thank you for calling me a liar.

        I posted to possibly help somebody make a better choice at the moment. I’ve had other drinkable and enjoyable Chianti from the current GO selection.

        I stand by that recommendation.

        Reply
        1. the connasewer

          I realize you post all the time. But if you want to help be careful about the criticisms. I notice you never mention case/bottle variation. I sold wine in Boston many years and it happens all the time. One “bad” bottle means another “good” bottle. Keep drinking.

          Reply
      3. flitcraft

        There are a host of reasons why wine ends up at Grocery Outlet, but one of them seems to be extreme bottle variation, maybe due to wine-making, often due to variable storage conditions. There’s a lot more extreme bottle variation in GO wines than I’ve ever experienced in a lifetime of buying wines at wineshops. Still, the thrill of the hunt for unexpected bargains outweighs disappointment over sometimes spoiled and undrinkable wines. And I had definitely had some bottles from GO that weren’t just ‘bad,’ they were no-question-objectively bad. As have other contributors here…

        Reply
        1. the connasewer

          Yes…I have poured my share down the sink. Especially ancient whites, beautiful well aged yellow. I have suggested to a number of managers that it’s shameful to foist dreck on the public. Buyer beware is not good business. FYI find in San Francisco. 2013 Estrelina P.N. Anderson Valley. Business was just sold and this ended up on the market. $45 list, $17 at G.O. I tasted it a few years ago at a party. Don’t remember much but any Anderson Valley P.N. is worth a shot. I know the winemaker!!!! Buy one, taste, run to store!!!! What are you waiting for?

          Reply
  1. the connasewer

    I don’t know what wine the previous contributors were tasting but the bottle of 09 Ripanera CC was excellent. Yes it’s 7 years old but drinking well for a classico wine. I have a lot of older Italian wines in my closet that reflect well when it comes to age. But remember…every bottle is different, like people, and an open mind is necessary when drinking. But to call this bottle vinegar makes me wonder……did this person get a bad bottle?

    Reply
    1. BargainWhine Post author

      Yes, I have smelled another bottle returned at the Richmond store (by none of Seedboy, delmartian1, or AF) and it sure smelled like vinegar. It would seem that the good bottles of this wine are pretty good, but there is a reasonably high incidence of bad bottles.

      Reply
    2. Darrell

      I have mentioned before that I trust most of the contributors here regarding their tasting ability and when there is a vast difference of evaluation, I place the blame squarely on the bottling.

      Reply
    3. seedboy

      The bottle I got must have been a bad bottle. However, given how pervasive acetobactor is when it invades a cellar, I’m shocked there are any good bottles of this. I guess it is possible that they bottled from the barrel and had some infected barrels.

      Reply
      1. Darrell

        Sufficient sulfur dioxide and elimination of oxygen will prevent acetobacter from flourishing even though acetobacter is in the barrel. Individual barrel bottling is a possible explanation if this is done. Sometimes barrel bung plugs, notably the rubber ones, pop out in some cellar, seasonal temperature change leaving a barrel vulnerable to air.

        Reply
  2. Expat

    I had this tonight and thought it was just as you described, BW. It was tight upon opening and loosened up as it breathed. I’ll come back to it but I thought it was fairly simple but nice as a dry, Italian food wine. I tracked closely with your flavor description. I was thinking about buying a few during the sale for backstock but I’m a little concerned that stockpiling could be unwise considering the vinegar bottles. I can’t imagine returning a bottle to GO 6 months later.

    Reply
    1. BargainWhine Post author

      Thanks for this report, AF. It’s too bad this seems to be a likely problem with this wine. Recall that you can always return a mostly un-consumed bottle.

      Reply

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