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Monte Antico Rosso (3 Liter) 2012

Tuscan Blends from Tuscany, Italy
  • JS91
0% ABV
  • JS90
  • JS90
  • JS91
  • JS90
  • JS90
  • JS90
  • WS90
  • WS88
  • RP88
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Winemaker Notes

A Tuscan classic! Deep ruby color with garnet reflections, its elegant bouquet of leather, black cherries, licorice and plums preludes a medium to full-bodied palate where ripe red fruit, subtle notes of vanilla and violets harmonize and linger, interlacing with the soft tannins and silky texture. Firm backbone, perfect integration of acidity and fruit, well rounded, medium finish.

Critical Acclaim

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JS 91
James Suckling
This is one of the best value Italian reds on the market. Medium to full body with dried cherry, milk chocolate and light chili aromas and flavors. Long and delicious. Caressing mouthfeel. Bright acidity. A blend of sangiovese, merlot and cabernet sauvignon. Drink now. Screw cap.
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Monte Antico

Monte Antico

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Monte Antico, Tuscany, Italy
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Neil Empson and renowned oenologist Franco Bernabei conjunctly orchestrate these wines from Tuscany's very finest vineyard sites. Having access to the region's top crus and ideal microclimates means they can pick and choose according to harvest conditions, achieving consistent excellence with each vintage.

The superlative characteristics of chosen locations and strict quality parameters make for the wine's depth, structure, character and longevity.

Terrain includes compact, very fine-textured limestone, at an altitude of 400-450 meters above sea level; rocky, clayey/calcareous areas, also at altitudes around 400 meters; and clayey/siliceous/calcareous soil, at an altitude of 250-300 meters: a cross-section of Tuscany's best.

One of the most iconic Italian regions for wine, scenery and history, Tuscany is the world’s most important outpost for the Sangiovese grape. Ranging in style from fruity and simple to complex and age-worthy, as well as in price from budget-friendly to ultra-premium, Sangiovese makes up a significant percentage of plantings here, with the white Trebbiano Toscano coming in second.

Within Tuscany, many esteemed wines have their own respective sub-zones, including Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. The climate is Mediterranean and the topography consists mostly of picturesque rolling hills, scattered with vineyards.

Sangiovese at its simplest produces straightforward pizza-friendly wines with bright red fruit and not much more, but at its best it shows remarkable complexity. Top-quality Sangiovese-based wines can be expressive of a range of characteristics such as sour cherry, balsamic, dried herbs, leather, fresh earth, dried flowers, anise and tobacco. Brunello expresses well the particularities of vintage variations and is thus popular among collectors who like to cellar the same wine over multiple years. Chianti is associated with tangy and food-friendly dry wines at various price points. A more recent phenomenon as of the 1970s is the “Super Tuscan”—a wine made from international grape varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Syrah, with or without Sangiovese. These are common in Tuscany’s coastal regions like Bolgheri, Val di Cornia, Carmignano and the island of Elba.

Tuscan Blends

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Tuscan blends tend to be big, bold, and modern in style, sometimes with noticeable new oak, whose high quality can often command super-premium prices.

Their composition of international grape varieties or mix of international and indigenous varieties makes Tuscan blends unique. Where did the idea come from? Well, a few Tuscan winemakers who had become disenchanted with Italian winemaking law in the 1970s retaliated and decided to get creative. They started making wine solely from international grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, or Syrah or adding these grapes to Sangiovese, in differing proportions, and the phenomenon was born.

The most famous Tuscan blends from Italy are called “Super Tuscans.” One of the most well-known, ‘Tignanello,’ created by Antinori in 1971, is a blend of 80% Sangiovese, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc. Marchesi Lodovico Antinori in 1981, with the help of renowned agronomist Andre Tchelistcheff, established Ornellaia. The property has changed hands but since 2002 Marchesi de' Frescobaldi has been the sole owner and its quality remains stellar. It is typically a blend of about half Cabernet Sauvignon, a third Merlot and the rest filled in with Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Sassicaia, another, has earned itself an extraordinary reputation and global esteem, so much so that the Sassicaia property was actually awarded its very own appellation with the 1994 vintage. It is typically 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Cabernet Franc.

WWH142145_2012 Item# 168046