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  • Country ranking ?

    4
  • Producer ranking ?

    1
  • Decanting time

    3h
  • When to drink

    from 2025
  • Food Pairing

    Roasted venison fillet with beetroot pure and parmesan

The Tb points given to this wine are the world’s most valid and most up-to-date evaluation of the quality of the wine. Tastingbook points are formed by the Tastingbook algorithm which takes into account the wine ratings of the world's best-known professional wine critics, wine ratings by thousands of tastingbook’s professionals and users, the generally recognised vintage quality and reputation of the vineyard and winery. Wine needs at least five professional ratings to get the Tb score. Tastingbook.com is the world's largest wine information service which is an unbiased, non-commercial and free for everyone.

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The 2016 vintage, regular in its development and time span, will be remembered for the harvest of healthy and fully ripe grapes, favored by excellent climatic conditions during the entire growing season, particularly during the period of picking. Attention was nonetheless completely focused both in the vineyard and in the cellar where the grape berries were delicately destemmed and the grapes, before being crushed, were carefully selected on the sorting table. It is essential that only perfect berries go into the 60 hectoliter (1,580 gallon) conical fermenting tanks where the wine is made. The must was slowly transformed into wine during the fermentation and the phase of skin contact; extreme care is needed in this winemaking phase in order to maintain the freshness and aroma of the grapes without neglecting an extraction of color and a management of the tannins aimed at both sweetness and elegance. Once the wine was run off its skins, the malolactic fermentation in small oak barrels took place, a process which exalted the complexity and pleasure level of the wine. The first part of aging took place in new French oak barrels, 60 gallons in capacity, and lasted ten months. After an initial period of aging in separate lots, the components were blended together and the evolution in oak is completely carried out.  

 

Notes from the winemaker: An exceptional vintage in terms of quality, characterized, in comparison to 2015, by slightly cool weather conditions and light rains during the growing season. A year in which the balance of the soil and the site were reflected in the wine. A harmonious expression of a Solaia with many facets. A wine which is slightly shyer, introverted, in certain aspects even more fascinating than the previous year, one capable of telling its tale both now and in the years to come.

Historical Data

Solaia is a 50 acre (20 hectare) vineyard with a southwestern exposure located at an altitude between 1150 and 1325 feet (350-400 meters) above sea level and with a stony soil of “alberese” (hard limestone) and “galestro” (flaky calcareous clay) rock. The vineyard is located at the Tignanello estate. The Antinori family produced this wine for the first time in the year 1978, and the initial blend was 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 20% Cabernet Franc, a formula repeated in 1979 as well. In the following years, 20% of Sangiovese was introduced and certain adjustments were also made in the rapport between Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc until the current blend was settled upon. Solaia is produced only in exceptional vintage, and was not produced in 1980, 1981, 1983, 1984, and 1992.

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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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Information

Origin

Florence, Tuscany

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Xanto

Inside Information

An intense ruby red in color, Solaia 2016 distinguishes itself on the nose by its intensity and its aromatic richness, the notes of ripe dark fruit, particularly blackberries and blueberries, fused with balsamic sensations of aromatic herbs and mint; sweet notes of chocolate and cotton candy alternate with spicy suggestions of white pepper, conferring freshness and complexity to the bouquet. The palate is rich and enveloping with supple and silky tannins capable of transmitting elegance, character, and an exceptional expression of fruit. The vibrant finish, long and very persistent, indicates an optimal aging potential over time.

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Highlights

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