Marchesi Antinori - Solaia 2011
Marchesi Antinori - Solaia 2011 (93+ TSW)
The Tuscan Antinori family has been making wine for more than six centuries.They are one of the largest wine companies in Italy and their innovations played a major role in the “Super-Tuscan” revolution of the 1970s.
Solaia is a 20 hectare vineyard with a southwestern exposure located at an altitude between 350-400 meters above sea level and with a stony soil of hard limestone and flaky calcareous clay rock. The vineyard is located at the Tignanello estate.
The Antinori family produced this wine for the first time in the year 1978, and the initial blend was 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 20% Cabernet Franc, a formula repeated in 1979 as well. In the following years, 20% of Sangiovese was introduced and certain adjustments were also made in the rapport between Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc until the current blend was settled upon. Solaia is produced only in exceptional vintage, and was not produced in 1980, 1981, 1983, 1984, and 1992.
The Solaia blend (Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Sangiovese) is also the flagship wine of the Antinori family.
The must was fermented and slowly transformed into wine in conical fermenting tanks with a 6000 liter capacity; the wine was then run off its skins and went through a complete malolactic fermentation in small oak barrels to further enhance elegance and drinking pleasure. The aging process then began, and, in the case of the 2011 Solaia, lasted fourteen months and took place entirely in new French oak barrels. During this period the various lots, fermented separately on the basis of their variety and the specific conditions of their vineyard plots, slowly aged and were then assembled a few months before bottling.
My tasting notes:
In the glass an intense dark ruby red color.
On the medium+ nose delicate aromas of ripe dark cherries, plums and coffee with hints of tobacco, chocolate and mint.
On the palate dry, medium+ bodied with medium+ acidity and medium ripe tannins. Very balanced, complex with nice freshness. freshness. Flavours of ripe dark fruit, balsamico, cedar, chocolate and vanilla. Excellent persistent finish. Top!