A Sip of Tuscany

With several cold fronts in Miami (sweater weather), I’ve been drinking more red wine. The other night, I discovered this Italian vino inside of my wine cooler, I believe left from a good friend of mine from a party. I’ve been really into Italian wine lately, so I was excited to open this 2016 Tenuta Guado al Tasso Il Bruciato.

The Antinori family has been committed to the art of winemaking for over six centuries. It started in 1385 (damn, that’s old), when Giovanni di Piero Antinori became a member of the “Arte Fiorentina dei Vinattieri,” the Florentine Winemakers’ Guild. Now, the twenty-six generations long, the family keeps with tradition while innovating their winemaking.

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The Guado al Tasso estate is in the Bolgheri DOC, on the coast of upper Maremma, about one hundred kilometers southwest from Florence. This appellation has a relatively recent history, DOC Bolgheri was approved in 1995 and since then it has become an internationally recognized reference point for the Italian and international winemaking arena.

The estate covers an area of over 2,500 acres, with 790 acres of those being planted with vines—Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, and Vermentino. The nearby sea provides a mild climate with constant breezes that mitigate summer heat and alleviate harsh winter weather, maintaining a clear sky and a high level of sunlight exposure.

I read that the 2016 vintage was characterized by a mild winter with infrequent but abundant rainfall which assisted in creating important reserves of ground water in the soil. The beginning of the growing season arrived a bit earlier than usual and then continued in a regular fashion, accompanied by a sunny spring with temperatures and rainfall which fully respected normal seasonal averages. Summer was overall warm and without particular temperature peaks. The ripening of the grapes took place in weather marked by generally warm and sunny days, followed by cool nights which favored the development of aromatic substances and a proper rapport between sugars and acidity. Picking took place between late August and late September.

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The 2016 Bruciato Is a blend of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, and 15% Syrah. It has a medium ruby color and has a strong nose of ripe red berries and plum. The legs stick nicely to the glass, and drip down slowly. It tastes of cherry, plum, blackberry, and spices. It’s dry but nicely balanced. Has a nice finish. I paired it with some post-Christmas pre-New Year’s relaxation. You can find it online for about $25.

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