x
  • Country ranking ?

    216
  • Producer ranking ?

    18
  • Decanting time

    2h
  • When to drink

    2020-2035

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The Story

When the initial production of Solaia began, the grape source was a parcel within the larger Tignanello vineyard. The same special characteristics as the original vineyard – altitude, soil, and exposure to the sun (which accounts for the name of the parcel and the wine: “Solaia” derives from sole, the Italian word for the sun) are also to be found in a nearby vineyard plot which, since 1997, has been integrated into the original vineyard. The Solaia vineyard, currently, consists of 20 hectares (49 acres) and is planted to Cabernet Sauvignon (15 hectares), Cabernet Franc (1 hectar) and Sangiovese (4 hectares); the vines have an average of fifteen years. Vine density ranges from 5,500 to 7,200 per hectare and a low, spurred-cordon training system is used. Over the years there has been a progressive renewal of the Solaia vineyard. This has been accomplished by utilizing the many years of experience and the more extensive knowledge of the estate’s land to further bring out the personality of Solaia as a wine.

 

The Marchesi Antinori firm produced this wine for the first time in the 1978 vintage with an initial blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Cabernet Franc, a blend repeated again in 1979. In the following vintages 20% of Sangiovese was added to the Cabernet grapes and the ratio of Cabernet Franc to Cabernet Sauvignon was changed in order to create a wine which has now become definitive in its various composing elements. Solaia is only produced in exceptional vintages: it was not produced in 1980, 1981, 1983, 1984 and 1992. In 2002 the Sangiovese did not achieve satisfactory quality for Solaia: only Cabernet grapes were used. This vintage is known as “annata diversa” (different vintage).

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Latest Pro-tasting notes

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Written Notes

Higher in Cabernet Sauvignon than the Tignanello. From 10.5 ha in the centre of Tuscany, at 250 m. Warm days and coolish nights. Very rocky shallow calcaire soils. 1994 was a good vintage with a hot summer, September rain and a dry sunny harvest in October. 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Cabernet Franc, 20% Sangiovese. Macerated in open wood barrels with regular punchdown, Sangiovese 15 days, Cabernet Sauvignon 20 days. Malo and maturation in new and one-year-old barrels for 14 months. Tasted in magnum. 
Unfiltered in 1994 so slightly cloudy (nowadays they do a light filtration). Much the deepest colour of the flight. Dark ruby with some brick at the rim. Lovely nose. Fully evolved. Explosive, almost gunpowder. Lots of tertiary cedary aromas. A hint of prunes but quite fresh enough. Great stuff! Slightly dusty in a very good way. You can see the Sangiovese and that slight earthiness is definitely bordeaux. Very clean and 

  • 95p
Dark, deep magenta colour. Developing nose: earth aromas, stables and blackcurrant. Blackcurrant, blueberry, boysenberry, a touch of walnut, toffee and chocolate can be discerned in the flavour. The finish is very long and large. Drinkable until at least 2025.
  • 90p
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Information

Origin

Florence, Tuscany

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