National Chianti Day Date in the current year: September 6, 2024

National Chianti Day If you don’t know how to spend your first Friday night in September, we’ll tell you how. It’s the perfect day to sit back and relax with a glass of red wine from the Tuscany region of Italy since it is National Chianti Day.

Many wines are named after the grape variety they are produced from (or the predominant grape variety in a blend), but this is not always the case. Wines made in the classic wine-producing regions of Europe are usually named after the region where they were produced: Alsace wine, Beaujolais, Bordeaux wine, Burgundy wine, Champagne, Rioja, etc. Chianti is one of such wines.

Chianti is a mountainous region in Tuscany. The earliest references to a Chianti wine date back to the late 14th century. The first attempt to define the borders of the wine-making region of Chianti was made in 1427. According to a 1716 edict issued by Grand Duke of Tuscany Cosimo III de’ Medici, Chianti could be produced in the villages of Castellina in Chianti, Gaiole in Chianti, Radda in Chianti, Greve in Chianti, and a stretch of hillside north of Greve.

This definition of the Chianti wine region remained in place for over two centuries. The government of Italy expanded the region in 1932 and then again in 1967. Today, the Chianti wine-producing region covers a significant area in central Tuscany.

Chianti produced in the original Chianti region defined by Cosimo III de’ Medici’s edict is referred to as Chianti Classico, whereas wines produced outside this area are referred to as simply Chianti. Chianti Classico wines can be recognized by the black rooster seal on the bottleneck. Aged Chianti may be labeled as Chianti Riserva, and Chianti produced according to a set of stringent requirements may be labeled as Chianti Superiore.

Although the earliest records of Chianti refer to it as a white wine, modern Chianti is produced predominantly from Sangiovese, a red grape variety that is widely grown in Italy. Wines made from Sangiovese grapes usually have high acidity and moderate tannins.

According to regulations, only wines that are produced with at least 80% Sangiovese grapes can be labeled as Chianti. Approved red grape varieties that can be added to Sangiovese include Cabernet Sauvignon, Canaiolo, Merlot and Shiraz (Syrah). Since 2006, it has been prohibited to use white grape varieties in the production of Chianti Classico. Depending on the proportion of grapes in the blend, Chiantis come in a variety of styles.

National Chianti Day was founded in 2016 by Santa Margherita USA, a wine import company that specializes in fine wines from premium and ultra-premium Italian wine estates. How to observe this amazing holiday? You can pick up a bottle of Chianti to enjoy with your dinner or share with a friend, book a wine tasting or a food and wine pairing class, read a book or watch a documentary about Italian wines, throw a potluck-style Chianti tasting party for your friends, or use Chianti in cooking. And don’t forget to spread the word about the holiday on social media with the hashtag #NationalChiantiDay. 

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National Chianti Day, observances in the US, unofficial holidays, food and drink days, Italian wines, chianti