Sassello Chianti Classico Gran Selezione

Sassello Chianti Classico Gran Selezione

  • Chianti Classico Gran Selezione DOCG, 
  • Tuscany, 
  • italy

Latest Awards

  • 93 points Wine Advocate , April 2021
  • 90 points Best of Year 2020 Wine Enthusiast , December 2020

Stewards of Chianti Classico, Castello di Verrazzano has played an indelible role in Tuscan winemaking and American history. Owners Luigi and Silvia Cappellini pour their passion into the estate, producing traditional, organic wines that deservedly enjoy an incredibly loyal following around the world. A founding member of the Consorzio del Chianti Classico, Verrazzano has made wine since the earliest times. The property occupies the site of former Etruscan and Roman settlements and was home to the explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano, who was the first to discover America’s east coast, landing at the bay of New York in the early 16th century.


Since acquiring the estate, the Cappellini family has replanted Verrazzano’s vineyards, which fan out from the forest limits down to the valley below. They farm organically and have been certified since the 2014 vintage. Located on a hilltop in the Greve, the heart of Chianti Classico, Verrazzano’s 220 acre estate includes 128 acres of vineyards at altitudes between 920 and 1300 feet above sea level, higher than average for Chianti Classico vineyards. Though present in southern parts of the Classico area, limestone is unique to Verrazzano which is in the cooler, northern part of the zone. This singular combination of limestone soil and cooler growing conditions accounts for the wine’s muscularity and finesse. The true lifeblood of the vineyards comes from the surrounding Verrazzano-owned woodland area, which acts as a cocoon for the vines, offering pollution protection and maintaining freshness. In addition, the entire winery is heated by wood from these forests.

Winemaking & Aging

Hand harvested at the beginning of October and fermented in small batches at a controlled temperature (maximum of 86°F), with a maceration period of 15–17 days and frequent pumping over. Aged for a combined minimum of 30 months in French oak barriques (75% Allier; 25% Vosges) and bottle prior to release.

Tasting Notes

Intense ruby red in color. The fragrance is fine and intense, and offers a variety of fruit notes including cherries, blackberries, and raspberries underlined by hints of oak and vanilla. The taste is elegant and complex with closely-woven tannins joined with notes of fruit and spice, oak and vanilla, with an equally pleasant and long finish.


A rich and flavorful red with dark berries and hints of hazelnuts and dark chocolate. Full body. Nicely chewy tannins and a smoky, berry and coffee aftertaste. Better in a year or two. Try after 2020. – J.S.

James Suckling - November 2019


I had previously reviewed this wine made with organic fruit. The Castello di Verrazzano 2016 Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Sassello is a dark and thickly layered wine that is packed tight with dried blackberry, Morello cherry, spice and cured leather. With 20,000 bottles produced, this is a full-bodied Gran Selezione with concentrated flavors and generous fruit weight. – M.L.

Wine Advocate - April 2021


The 2016 Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Sassello hails from one of the most ancient cellars and legendary castles in this area around Greve in Chianti. Wine has been produced here since as far back as 1150, and the castle gave birth to the famed explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano, who discovered New York. This Gran Selezione shows classic lines with a lot of rich fruit stuffed inside. Named after the redwing thrush that flutter through these vineyards during harvest time, the Sassello sees 18 months in large wooden vessels, then another 12 months in smaller tonneaux and barrique. Zesty acidity appears on the close, making for a great lasagna Sangiovese. - M.L.

Wine Advocate - September 2019


The 2016 Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Sassello is a wild, potent wine. Sweet black cherries in liqueur, cloves, licorice, menthol, hard candy and wild flowers give the 2016 its distinctly exotic profile. Deep, expressive and full of personality, the 2016 has a ton of character. Readers should expect an exotic, quirky Chianti Classico with a lot of depth, crazy aromatics and plenty of persistence. - A.G.

Vinous - July 2019


An attractive warmth of ripe currants, cherries and plums with firm tannins, a fine acidity and an impressive length. - Drinking Window 2020 - 2026. – A.F., A.J., M.W

Decanter - May 2020

 Best of Year 2020

Aromas of underbrush, camphor, moist earth and mature black-skinned fruit form the nose. On the fullbodied, concentrated palate, close-grained tannins accompany dried black cherry, licorice and roasted coffee bean before a firm, mouthdrying finish. —K.O.

Wine Enthusiast - December 2020


Chianti Classico Gran Selezione DOCG

grape varieties

100% estate-grown Sangiovese from Verrazzano's prized La Querciolina vineyard



technical details
  • ABV: 14.5%
  • Closure: Cork
  • Vegan

Luigi Cappellini Silvia Cappellini

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