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Anteprima Vini della Costa Toscana 2019

Updated: Mar 17

My good friend and venerable member of the Italian wine press Mauro Giacomo Bertolli, suggested that a visit to this event would be highly rewarded so I contacted the press office and an invitation followed soon after.

The weather in Lucca on this Saturday morning was uncommonly wet and chilly, but approaching the magnificent building and gardens of Real Collegio in Piazza del Collegio my spirits were lifted.

Once the formalities were concluded, I ascended the impressive staircase to the press tasting rooms and introduced myself to a Sommelier that would assist me today with my tastings.

Reading through the literature on my tasting table I was immediately struck and sad that the leaders of this wine growing region for whatever reason were not listed. Their absence did not help promote this event.

The notable exception of the greatest winery of them all, the esteemed Tenuta San Guido, Bolgheri producer of Sassicaia. The total joy on the faces of the general public tasting this wine, maybe for the first time, was poignant. Bravo! Tenuta San Guido.

Tastings Notes: 2018 vintage

Sassotondo San Lorenzo

Ciliegiolo 100%

Ruby red with purple infusion. Red fruits. Dry tannins. Full bodied. Angular with abrupt end.

Points 88 TW

Collemassari Poggio Lombrone  

Sangiovese 100%

Medium ruby red in colour with a purple outline. Blackberry and raspberry. Fine tannins, good acidity. Faint cut flower aromatics, earthy but fresh. Biodynamic.

Points  90 TW

Tenuta Marsiliana Principe Corsini Marsiliana

A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Petit Verdot. Biodynamic.

Blue flower bouquet. Blackcurrant, blueberry, liquorice, leather. Open, plump and juicy. Broad mid palate. Showing well.

Points 92+ TW

Morisfarms Avvoltore

Sangiovese 75% Cabernet Sauvignon 20% Syrah 5%.

Mid ruby red with purplish shards. Violet flowers, black fruits, eastern sweet spice, savoury. Will add weight. Great possibilities here.

Points 92/94 TW

Campo Al Mare Campo Al Mare 

Merlot 80% Cabernet Sauvignon 10% Cabernet Franc 5% Petit Verdot 5%

Dark ruby red. Red plumed fig, liquorice, dried sage, sweet incense. A little dusty. Ample and intense.

Points 92 TW

Michele Satta Piastraia

A blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Sangiovese.

Deep dark red with purple tones. Blackberry and black currant fruits, soft fresh tannins, liquorice, savoury, earthy.

Points 91 TW

Batzella Vox Locis

Cabernet Franc 100%

Dark purple in colour, black fruits, pipe tobacco, dried herbs, grassy notes. Interesting.

Points 93+ TW

Campo Alla Sughera Arinone

Cabernet Sauvignon 45% Merlot 30% Cabernet Franc 20% Petit Verdot 5%

Dark ruby red. Blackberry, wet earth, spice, leather. Full bodied. Creamy and expressive.

Points 93 TW

Podere Grattamacco Grattamacco

Cabinet Sauvignon 65% Merlot 20% Sangiovese 15%

Deep ruby red. Plum and blackberry, tobacco, rosemary. Good balance, exceptional finest, silky tannins. Long finish.

Points 94 + TW

Podere Sapaio  Sapaio

Cabernet Sauvignon 70% Petit Verdot 20% Cabernet Franc 10%

Dark ruby red with black tones. Fesh black fruits, mint,soft and rounded but with structure. Succulent.

Points 94 TW

Caiarossa Caiarossa

A blend of  Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Alicante and Petit Verdot

Dark red with black tones. Raspberry, plum, chocolate. Tannins slightly dry but fruit ripeness should overcome.This is a wine blended with character. Good job.

Points 93/95 TW

Tenuta Maria Teresa Merlot

Merlot 100%

Medium to dark ruby red in colour. Blueberry, liquorice, fresh tannins, good acidlty. Young, needs time

Points 90/92 TW

I then tasted a few wines from previous vintages:

Sassotondo San Lorenzo 2015


Mid ruby red in colour. Red fruits. Compact, but at odds with itself.

Points 87 TW

Morisfarms Avvoltore 2016

Sangiovese 75% Cabernet Sauvignon 20% Syrah 5%

Dark ruby red, blackberry, raspberry, liquorice, orange peel. Great minerality holding up fruit. Full bodied but with lightness. A beauty.

Points 95 TW

Tenuta Marsiliana Principe Corsini 2014  Marsiliana

A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon , Merlot, Petit Verdot. Biodynamic.

Dark ruby red in colour. Cherry and plum fruit, meadow flower aromatics, earthy and savoury, pencil lead on back end.

Points 93 TW

Celestina Fé Celestina Fé 2015

Sangiovese 100%

Medium to dark ruby red in colour. Sweet cherry and black fruits, liquorice. Would have benefited from more acidity, touch dry on back end.

Points 89 TW

Campo Al Mare Campo Al Mare 2017

A blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.

Dark ruby red in colour. Blue flower bouquet. Cherry and Blackcurrant. Liquorice. Little closed. Potent

Points 91/93 TW

Tenuta Argentiera Argentiera 2016

A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc.

Rich ruby red in colour. Sweet soft entry of blueberry and pomegranate fruit undercut with minerality. Sharp character but flamboyant. Ready but would benefit from a couple of years of bottle age.

Points 93/94 TW

Tenuta Prima Pietra 2016

A blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.

Intense Ruby red in colour. Black cherries and plum fruits, eucalyptus, smoke, leather, little spice on the back end. Well balanced. Fine tannins, elegant. Good showing.

Points 93 TW

Villa Santo Stefano Loto 2016

Cabernet Sauvignon 60% Merlot 40% Petit Verdot 10%

Deep ruby red in colour. Red berries, smoke and cedar, leather. Full bodied. Good texture. Elegant and balanced.

Points 93 TW

Podere Fedespina Ca’ 2013

Merlot 100%

Dark ruby red in colour. Red cherry, raspberry, mediterranean herbs, underlying mineral notes. Fresh, clean and pure. Juicy.

Points 92 TW

Podere Fedespina Fedespina 2016

Pinot Noir 100%

Ruby red in colour. Red fruits, leather, spice notes all underlined with a  concentrated minerality which brings a freshness into play. Complex. Great texture. Elegant and yet not full of itself. Striking character.

Points 95 TW

…Then on to Tenuta San Guido:

Sassicaia 2012

A good vintage, the cooler temperatures on the coast of Bolgheri helped.

Intense ruby red in colour. Fuit of the forest. Intergrated. Elegant. Balsamic notes. Beginning to show complexity.

On the end spice, fungi and cedar alongside damp earth. Great bouquet. Long finish.

Points 96+TW

Sassicaia 2013

Although young in age and character. Expected austere and taut notes on entry. Tannins not giving way to fruit showing blackberry and blackcurrant, mint sensation. Complex?…Yes! Balanced within a hair's breadth. This needs 10 years in bottle to show us its best…Then expect to be entertained!

Points 97+ TW

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