Thursday, August 18, 2011

Antinori: Generations in the making

If you’re a lover of Italian wine, then you must know the name Antinori. With bottles like Guado al Tasso, Solaia and Tignanello; Antinori conquered the fine wine racket with a host of “Super Tuscans” that helped define a generation of winemaking. However, you don’t need to spend upwards of $70 to enjoy a gorgeous bottle of Tuscan juice from this winery, which is now on it’s 26th generation of ownership (that’s right, 26 generations). Antinori also produces a number of bottles in the value category that drink beautifully. One of my favorites value wines is the Antinori Chianti Classico Peppoli. Each year I look forward to the newest vintage for easy drinking and highly enjoyable Chianti.

2008 Antinori Chianti Classico P├Ęppoli - The nose showed dusty potpourri with fresh crushed cranberry, cinnamon stick, and dark bakers chocolate. On the palate, it was medium bodied with a high level of acidity pushing dry yet intense red fruit and mocha. The finish was long on the palate with some drying tannin and lots of dry red fruit extract. (88 points) Find it on: Wine-Searcher!

I was a little on the fence with this wine but it opened up nicely after a couple of hours open in bottle. Once it started to show a little body on the palate, the dry red fruits and high acidity became more and more tolerable. In the end this is not Chianti for the neophyte, but does provide an interesting contrast to many of the, soft and modern, Chianti on the market these days.

I enjoyed this wine. I won’t put more in my cellar but I would be happy to accept a glass if offered. For a great value white wine from Antinori, I highly recommend the Antinori, Guado al Tasso Vermentino. It's an Italian white that smells and tastes as if it had been plucked right from a Mediterranean coast only days before you tasted it.

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