PUBLISHED : Sunday, 19 February, 1995, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 19 February, 1995, 12:00am

Wine: Marchesi de Frescobaldi. Castello di Nipozzano. Chianti Rufina Riserva.

Grape: Sangiovese (with a little Canaiolo, Trebbiano and Malvasia).

Region: Tuscany, Italy.

Vintage: 1990.

CHIANTI in the past was quite variable in quality ranging from thin, bitter wine to the luscious, rich and full bodied. Great improvements in vineyard management and in technology have taken place in Tuscany and some of the finest red wines in the world can now be found there. Built in the 10th century, the Castle of Nipozzano is located in the heart of Chianti Rufina, the smallest of the seven Chianti production areas. Nipozzano is one of the three major estates owned by the noble Florentine family of Frescobaldi. The Riserva designation means that the wine is aged about two years in oak casks and a further nine months in bottle before being released. The wine is a deep ruby red and the nose concentrated. On the palate there are ripe cherry fruit flavours with soft tannins and a long finish. This example of a top chianti from the outstanding 1990 vintage will age well over the next 10 years. Drink it with roast red meats or game.

Where To Buy: From Wine 'n' Things (tel: 2880 9722) at HK$110 per bottle. Excellent value for a wine of this quality.