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After almost 30 years of experimentation and solid work the Marquis decided to release Sassicaia´s 1968 vintage to the open market using his cousin´s, Antinori´s distribution network in the early 1970s, with instant sensation. At a Decanter tasting of Cabernet wines in London, 1978, Sassicaia from vintage 1972 beat all the other 33 wines of France and California, and since then Sassicaia has been one of the leading wines in the world and in great demand among wine collectors and investors. The marquis Mario Incisa della Rocchetta passed away in 1983. His son, Marquis Nicolò Incisa della Rocchetta, now oversees all estate operations.
Sassicaia means “the place of many stones,” and refers to the region’s gravel soil. The original vineyards have a southwest exposure with extensive sun and maritime breezes that create robust vegetation. The grapes were handpicked, destemmed and crushed before fermenting with natural yeasts for 15 days in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks. The wine was aged in French oak barriques (40% new) for 24 months, then refined for 6 months in bottle before release.
The climate in 1974 was mediocre with excessive rains and erratic temperature and light.
Wine making: Vinification took place in wooden Slavonian oak vats of 2 Hl with a maceration of about one week.
Ageing: 75% of the oak barrels used for ageing were made of Slavonian oak, while the remaining 25% were new French oak. The Slavonian oak barrels were manufactured
in Conegliano Veneto and were new for 40%, while 60% had been used once before. The aging lasted 18 months.
Tasting notes: It is a vintage with good organoleptic characteristics both of taste and fragrance. The body is medium, but not excessive, because there is no abundance of tannins.
(notes from the 1970’s)