When a ‘fiasco’ is not a disaster

Posted on: 7th July, 2014

Category: The Wine Buff

Contributor: Tony Eklof

Tony Eklof, originally from New England, has settled in Clonakilty after a career as a librarian at University College Dublin. His knowledge and passion for wine has been inspired by frequent visits to the wine growing regions of the continent, particularly Italy and France.

Chianti is surely one of the most recognisable names in the world of wine. It is both a wine and a wine-growing region.

With some people, it will still conjure up memories of Italian restaurants with red and white check tablecloths, and wine in a straw basket or flask, known as a fiasco. There was a practical side to the wine baskets, namely they protected the bottles during shipment. Most producers now bottle chianti in more standard bottles although I have noticed recently the fiaschi making something of a comeback on the shelves.

Chianti can range from light and fresh with cherry and strawberry flavours, to older more complex wines with hints of tobacco and coffee. Not surprisingly, good Chianti is the perfect partner for fine Italian cuisine.

The main grape used in the production of Chianti is Sangiovese although traditionally it was blended with a small amount of other local grapes such as Canaiolo or even Malvasia bianca, although white grapes are no longer allowed. In recent years some of the top producers have experimented with using less traditional grapes from France, although in the premium growing areas, by law, the wine must consist of at least 80 per cent Sangiovese grapes. Some modern Chianti consists of 100 per cent Sangiovese.

The Chianti growing region covers a large portion of Tuscany with the finest area squeezed in between Florence in the north and Siena in the south. At its most basic, Chianti DOCG is a fresh, fruity, somewhat astringent easy drinking wine. Wines from the finest growing area are classified as Chianti Classico and carry the familiar Black Rooster on the label. The Classico region is clustered around four villages or ‘communes’, Castellina, Gaiole, Radda and Greve-in-Chianti. This is a popular area for wine tours, with many of the wineries having their own restaurants and offering accommodation set amongst some of the most scenic Tuscan countryside. The finest Chianti Classico wines I have tasted come from the producers, Isole e Olena, Antinori, Coltibuono, and Carpineto.

Looking for value, keep an eye out for wines from a number of  sub-regions, such as  Chianti Rufina from the foothills east of Florence, or Chianti Colli Senisi from Siena.

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13th April, 2018  ·  

An evening on the 'Balance of Feeling Good' by Clonakilty Gaa Club Health and Wellbeing Committee followed by Guest Speaker, Cork GAA Chairperson, Tracey Kennedy.

Paddy Duggan, former Principal of Clonakilty Community College, will be MC on the night, facilitating a discussion on getting the balance of feeling good.
Contributors on the night are Colm Sheehy, Conor Murray, David Lowney, Denis Murphy, Eoghan Deasy, Sean McEvoy, Thomas Clancy and Treasa O'Brien.
Topics covered will range from awareness and responsibility to yourself and others to the benefits of exercise and nutrition.
The evening is suitable for everyone aged 16 and over from players, members of the community, parents of young and adolescent children, etc.

This is a public event, free of charge and everyone is invited and very welcome to attend.
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12th April, 2018  ·  

The Cast of Harold Pinter’s ‘No Man’s Land’ are on their way to the All-Ireland finals, having won 26 awards, including five best of Festivals, at the Amateur Drama League of Ireland annual three act festivals. The play ‘No Man’s Land, by Harold Pinter, the Nobel Prize Winning Author is directed by Jennifer Williams.

One last opportunity to view this multi award winning play at Skibbereen Town Hall, on Saturday 14th of April, before the finals.

Having met by chance in a pub, two aging writers continue a long night of drinking and reminiscing in a stately London home. As the night wears on, their conversation wanders through memories long forgotten or invented. Is their encounter real or a delusion? Are they strangers or do they share a past history? When unexpected guests intrude upon an increasingly surreal evening, the atmosphere quickly changes from friendly to threatening, and the encounter becomes a game of survival.

Tickets may be purchased at the door or in advance by emailing schulldramagroup@gmail.com

For more information please contact hilary.mccarthy6@gmail.com
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9th April, 2018  ·  

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