The wine production of the Antinori family boasts, among its ranks, real wine monuments, able to warm the hearts of their fans around the world. On the other hand, it is still one of the oldest Maison, now in its twenty-sixth generation, with Albiera, Alessia and Allegra Antinori, daughters of the Marquis Piero Antinori, after more than 600 years of history. According to official sources, the founder, a certain Accarisio di Antinoro di Combiate, seems to have been the owner of agricultural land in the area of Passignano, halfway between Florence and Siena, as early as 1179. The official date that sanctioned the entry of this family into the world of wine, however, is 1385 when Giovanni Piero Antinori was admitted into the guild that protected the interests of Florentine wine producers, l’Arte dei Vinattieri.
Antinori’s wine must have been really good, so much that Francesco Redi, in 1685, praised its quality in his famous comic-lyric poem Bacco in Toscana. To get to the winery as we know it today, however, we have to get to 1898 when Ludovico and Piero founded the Marchesi L&P Antinori, with the aim of putting order and organize, in a centralized way, the various estates scattered throughout Tuscany. Since then, this farm has passed from the hands of Piero’s son, Niccolò, under whose impulse it was expanded with the purchase of the Castello della Sala, in Umbria, and then to his nephew Piero, a great innovator who, in addition to having conducted a wide range of experiments in the vineyard and in the cellar, stimulated his team to produce the great wines that made this House so famous.
Among the owned estates stands out the Tignanello one, consisting of 319 hectares of hilly land, between the valleys of Greve and Pesa, which also house the 57 hectares of the south-east facing Tignanello vineyard, between 350 and 400 meters above sea level. From this vineyard comes the homonymous Tignanello, a legendary wine as it was the first attempt to refine Sangiovese with varieties of Bordeaux origin such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. The 2010 vintage, an ideal vintage in Tuscany, brought to the cellar excellent quality grapes, which fermented and macerated in conical vats under careful control and with daily tastings, to evaluate the must evolution. The racking was followed by malolactic fermentation in barrique and, then, the aging for 14-16 months in oak barrels, French and Hungarian, half new and half second passage, always in separate lots. At the end of the aging the lots have been joined a few months before bottling, and after another year of rest the wine was commercialized.
This vintage (2010) shows in the glass a really intense ruby color, with an olfactory range that opens with notes of ripe cherry, creme de cassis, plum and pot pourri, followed by licorice, chocolate, cocoa butter and Mediterranean herbs, with final boise echoes of roasted coffee, humus, Balkan Sobranie tobacco and graphite. The palate has an attack that impresses with power and richness, with an evident softness, which does not tire thanks to the counterpoint with fresh and balsamic notes, and with tannins of extreme elegance; all enriched by the return of red fruit and spices that also characterize the almost endless persistence.
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