2018 Marchesi Antinori 'Solaia' Tuscany
This is a big wine with an elegant feel and impeccable balance. An expressive burst of bright cherry, black currant, iron and spice on the nose lead into graphite minerality, leather, and a lemon thyme note behind cherry and blueberry flavors. A little time in the glass releases that characteristic Solaia white soil dust. Decant today or cellar for two decades.
There just aren't many on the level of Piero Antinori. Process this for a moment: He represents the 25th generation in an unbroken string of vintners, beginning in 1385. 26 generations! His family started accumulating knowledge about vineyard and cellar practices when Chaucer was working on The Canterbury Tales. It's difficult to comprehend. His lifetime experience cannot be overstated as he has literally been involved with wine his entire life. In fact, one of his first memories is of German soldiers shooting barrels in his family's cellars as Europe descended into chaos at the end of WWII. He has a truly encyclopedic knowledge of what it means to be a winemaker, and he understands that he is a vital link from his family's past to its future as the Antinori footprint expands across the globe.
From its sloped southwesterly expired position in the sunniest 20-hectare part of Tignanello’s hillside home comes this sunkissed wine bursting with ripe raisins, blackcurrants and cherries. The texture here is so enjoyable but so is the acidity, subtly mouthwatering with creamy touches around the sides. Such depth and elegance, very well constructed, juicy and plush but at the same time this has a quiet personality. A delicious wine, Wait to drink, this has a long life ahead.
Antinori’s 2018 Solaia captures all of the elegance of this important vintage. The bouquet alone is mesmerizing. It speaks to the stunning beauty and pedigree of Cabernet Sauvignon as grown at the Antinori family’s Tignanello property. Sweet scents of crème de cassis, lavender, graphite, mint, spice and espresso lead into a fine, delineated palate. Bright and energetic, Solaia is decidedly medium in body in 2018, with striking purity and exceptional beauty. I can’t remember ever tasting a young Solaia with this much sheer appeal and balance in the early going. In 2018 Solaia is 73% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Sangiovese and 7% Cabernet Franc.