The 100 Tuscan wines to have in the cellar. Bet 1: Supertuscans and Brunello di Montalcino
A selection dedicated to the novels of Boccaccio's Decameron by Ais Toscana
In an article that appeared in these days in The Wine Advocate, Monica Larner, the Italian correspondent of Robert Parker, wine critic based in Rome and daughter of Hollywood director Stevan (Radici, Uccelli di bravo, Visitors), told her 100 favorite Italian wines inspired by the 100 novels of our Giovanni Boccaccio's Decameron.
I refer you to this article because it deserves to be read not only for its ranking - a genre of which Advocate was a precursor - but also for its introduction. In fact, when I read it, I really didn't expect much about the Decameron, perhaps conditioned by the stereotype of the American in Italy, educated, from a good family, "but, in short, what does she know about Boccaccio!
So even I, that is, we at Firenze Made in Tuscany, are ready to give you the list of our 100 favourite Tuscan wines. One a day like the novellas of the Decameron.
Of course, the choice isn't mine, but I've limited myself to getting the 10,000 Tuscan labels to the editorial staff over the last ten years, having them tasted and selected by our friends at AIS Toscana (and you can trust them). And here I am today, with a selection of the best of the best of this monumental work
Let's start with the Super Tuscan and Brunello di Montalcino. But it is only the first episode of our top 100 of Tuscan wines at the time of the quarantine. We update with others, up to 100. Stay in contact with us!
THE FIRST DAY: BEST SUPERTUSCANS
The Tuscany of great reds and great men. Starting with the wine that has arrived on the roof of the world. This tasting signed AIS Toscana was guided, in 2018, by an exceptional champion: Simone Loguercio, Best Sommelier of Italy 2018
The first wine: Sassicaia 2015 Bolgheri Sassicaia Tenuta San Guido Cabernet Sauvignon 85%, Cabernet Franc 15%
Ruby of medium chromatic charge, shining and not as concentrated as one would expect from a Cabernet. It shows a great olfactory freshness from the first approach: crème de cassis, cranberry, violet flowers, rhubarb and lavender, ferrous touches and a refined memory of mace, fireplace ash, cardamom and juniper berries. Consistent mouth that focuses on preservability rather than strength and muscularity. The surprising acidity gives us an extremely pleasant, interminable, never-tiring taste, favored by a fine tannin and a "marine" flavor.
The second wine: Le Pergole Torte 2015 Toscana IGT Montevertine
Sangiovese 100% IGT
Wears ruby with garnet glow, richer color than tradition. Refined on the nose with clear hints of red currant and cherry, combined with a fresh reminiscence of tamarind. Violet, noble spicy expressions, sandalwood, but above all the mark of the territory that emerges in the form of graphite and slate to complete the context. Mouth marked by a refreshing acidity, reminiscent of red fruits, juicy, savoury and long. The tannin is integrated and favors a drink of rare persistence and pleasantness, closing with a chinotto flavor.
The third wine: I Sodi di San Niccolò 2014 Toscana IGT Castellare di Castellina Sangiovese 85%, Malvasia Nera 15%.
Garnet at sight with ruby streaks. It strongly pushes pulpy scents of blackberry, morello cherry and pomegranate, which open the way to a floral of violet and iris, spices and pine resin. This is followed by elegant vegetal touches, nutmeg, brine and a touch of leather, ending with a delicate undergrowth. Fresh and savory at the entrance, a youthful temperament that not only slims the body, but also gives momentum and length. Fleshy and juicy fruits alternate until the end with notes of curry and citrus pulp.
The fourth wine: Messorio 2015 Toscana IGT Le Macchiole Merlot 100%
Ruby impenetrable to the eye. Clean, intense nose, which enriches the fruity initial of plum, marasca cherry jam, with persuasive floral nuances of rose and peony, berry yoghurt, carob, milk chocolate and aromatic herbs. Sumptuous, rich, but not for this reason heavy on the palate, with sensations that appear balanced and integrated, as if chiselled by a talented cellar artist. Deep, fleshy, it has character to sell and a promising ageing potential.
The fifth wine: Solaia 2015 Toscana IGT Antinori Cabernet Sauvignon 75%, Sangiovese 20%, Cabernet Franc 5%.
Dense and impenetrable to the eye. Strength, breadth, which is expressed through rich fruity notes of blueberry jam, raspberry and currant, laurel and myrtle. The floral touch of violet is followed by refined vegetable notes, cocoa and Tuscan cigar tobacco, while the background reveals a hint of iodine. Volume and opulence in the mouth, but each element is in its place and the contrast between warmth and envelopment on the one hand, tannicity and flavor on the other enchants. It moves velvety for an endless time.
The sixth wine: Flaccianello della Pieve 2015 Colli della Toscana Centrale IGT Fontodi Sangiovese 100%
Ruby red with garnet reflections, of excellent brightness. Olfactory picture intact and cohesive, revealing ripe red and black fruits, durone, blackberry, raspberry, macerated flowers, a fine hint of graphite and a spicy outfit reminiscent of the Orient, with turmeric and nutmeg. Full-bodied, rich taste, where the important tannic strength keeps the freshness in check, masterfully balancing the alcohol. Excellent flavor, masterful and imperious taste journey in the development of the mouth that ends mineral and slightly toasty.
The seventh wine: Grattamacco 2015 Bolgheri Superiore Cabernet Sauvignon 65%, Merlot 20%, Sangiovese 15%.
Ruby at the sight, presents the first garnet flashes at the edge. Slightly introspective nose at the beginning which, after a few minutes, widens to reveal crunchy fruity scents of myrtle, pomegranate and cherry, on which lie memories of aromatic herbs, walnut husk, Mediterranean scrub, sweet tobacco and iron filings. Full-bodied taste, immediately enlivened by a pleasant acidity and a clear minerality. The dense tannins, important and mature, manage to enrich the body, without hindering the complex and articulated taste development.
The eighth wine: Cepparello 2015 Toscana IGT Isole e Olena 100% Sangiovese
Deep ruby with garnet nuance. At the beginning the nose is floral and mineral, with a hint of humus and graphite, then turns to scents of ripe red fruit, such as sour cherry, red berries, and more delicate sweet spices and blond tobacco in the background, which amplify the wide aromatic picture. In the mouth it is sumptuous, austere, generous, and appears governed by an initial tannic/sapid embrace cohesive with measured acidity, followed by an important warmth that accompanies us to the balsamic finish.
The ninth wine: Fontalloro 2015 Toscana IGT Félsina Sangiovese 100%
Garnet of medium intensity coloring, bright and vivid. Variegated nose that gives fleshy fruity suggestions of cherry, plum and pomegranate, and expands on sensations of flowers and refined spices. A perfectly integrated balsamic touch enhances the already excellent olfactory profile. In the mouth it is distinguished by an elegant freshness enhanced by fine tannins and masterfully blended into the body however generous. Sliding and dynamic, up to the closure of red plum and cinnamon.
The tenth wine: Caberlot 2015 Toscana IGT Podere Il Carnasciale Caberlot 100% (Magnum format only)
Tested as a 75cl sample bottle instead of a classic magnum. Ruby red dense and cohesive, enlivened by a purple edge. Intense hints of ripe dark fruits and fleshy go to sweeten the important notes of green pepper, rose and geranium. Spices of equal strength recall green pepper and clove. In the mouth it plays on the surprise effect and amazes with an agile and slender body, which overturns the richness of the nose. Fresher and more savory than tannic, it moves for an appreciable length of time, closing in between vegetal and fruity.
THE SECOND DAY: THE BEST BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO, ANNATA
The best vintages of Brunello di Montalcino, from 2011 to today, selected during the Previews by AIS Toscana Sommeliers.
The first wine: SALVIONI Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2006
It has a lively ruby color just faded to garnet on the edge of the glass. The nose is deep, complex with infinite layers. Notes of blackberry, pipe tobacco and milk chocolate, cedar wood, pink pepper and licorice root. Mouth full, powerful, balanced tannin. Precise olfactory returns and a very long finish of spices and slightly smoky tones.
The second wine: TENUTA LE POTAZZINE Brunello di Montalcino Docg 2007
Medium intensity garnet, bright. Decisive nose with meticulous notes of balsamic fruit, humus and a slight hematic scent. The taste is elegant sciorina a good structure. The mouthfeel is still long and fine, consistently reflecting the sensations already expressed to the nose.
The third wine: CASTELLO ROMITORIO Brunello di Montalcino Docg 2008
Nice, empty ruby red color. The nose has an important fruity attack with recognitions of cherry marasca cherry, red flower potpourri, incense and mineral notes. In the mouth important fruity attack, a powerful and warm body with a nice freshness that is well balanced by a tannin, despite the youth, silky. The finish is very long. Guinea fowl with truffle.
The fourth wine: Altero Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2009 POGGIO ANTICO
Ruby red with a nice plot, lively. Excellent fruitiness of black cherry and cherry supported by a spice of cloves and cinnamon, leather and licorice, floral iris. In the mouth it has great prospects for the future, the components are well dosed and express themselves with harmony and grace and firm character. Long fruity persistence, juicy and masterly tannins.
The fifth wine: Vigna Vecchia Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2011 LE RAGNAIE
Vivid, soft garnet red. Austere and elegant impact, pomegranate and orange combine ferrous notes, then Tuscan cigar, a touch of chocolate and undergrowth. The taste development takes place with composure. It has rich and chewable tannins, excellent flavor.
The sixth wine: Vigna Loreto Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2012 MASTROJANNI
Garnet red, slightly dark, complex, articulated nose, blood orange, cherry, black cherry in alcohol, rose petals, aromatic herbs, sage, rosemary, blood notes, Tuscan cigar tobacco. The taste is silky, powerful, elegant, exciting finish.
The seventh wine: Madonna delle Grazie Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2013 IL MARRONETO
Compact and very clear pigmentation; olfactory fan of impact with the onset of blackberry and bitter orange, nutmeg and withered rose; intoxicating the mentholated and mineral aromatic supports with memories of chocolate praline. Tannins of rare elegance support a rich fruit that moves towards infinity between young freshness and pleasant flavor with satisfying returns of tobacco.
The eighth wine: FULIGNI Brunello di Montalcino Docg 2014
Transparent garnet red. Concentrated scent of currants before unfolding between apricot, nutmeg and balsamic memories. The attack on the palate is soft; at the center of the mouth stand out refined tannins, well balanced by mineral notes and a very long finish that proposes flowers and fruit.
The ninth wine: BARICCI Brunello di Montalcino Docg 2015
Soft garnet red. Clear pink floral traits anticipate red currant and cherry followed by cinnamon, licorice and orange peel. Lively and tasty mouth. The tannins, blended in the taste path, create a pleasant tension with freshness. The prolonged and sustained closure is of great class.
The tenth wine: LISINI Brunello di Montalcino Docg 2015
Very bright garnet dress. The scents of undergrowth and medicinal herbs introduce orange and currant to continue with a hint of pepper and liquorice. It enters in the mouth tasty and round and then relaxes thanks to the push of tasty tannins, which integrate perfectly in the smoothness of the sip.