About this WINE
Tenuta di Argiano was established in 1879 and since 1992 has been owned by Countess Noemi Marone Cinzano. The estate is now managed by Sebastiano Rosa, who learnt his trade in California, followed by stints at Lafite-Rothschild and Sassicaia. Winemaking guru Giacomo Tachis acts as a consultant.
The vineyards are superbly situated on the famous Montalcino hill on a south-facing limestone plateau nearly 1000ft above sea level. Yields are restricted through extensive crop-thinning in the summer and very careful fruit selection at harvest time. The grapes are hand harvested and then fermented, before being aged for 3 years in oak barrels.
This is new-wave Brunello: richer in fruit, riper, with smoother tannins, more elegant, more balanced and more accessible in its youth.
Cabernet Sauvignon lends itself particularly well in blends with Merlot. This is actually the archetypal Bordeaux blend, though in different proportions in the sub-regions and sometimes topped up with Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and Petit Verdot.
In the Médoc and Graves the percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend can range from 95% (Mouton-Rothschild) to as low as 40%. It is particularly suited to the dry, warm, free- draining, gravel-rich soils and is responsible for the redolent cassis characteristics as well as the depth of colour, tannic structure and pronounced acidity of Médoc wines. However 100% Cabernet Sauvignon wines can be slightly hollow-tasting in the middle palate and Merlot with its generous, fleshy fruit flavours acts as a perfect foil by filling in this cavity.
In St-Emilion and Pomerol, the blends are Merlot dominated as Cabernet Sauvignon can struggle to ripen there - when it is included, it adds structure and body to the wine. Sassicaia is the most famous Bordeaux blend in Italy and has spawned many imitations, whereby the blend is now firmly established in the New World and particularly in California and Australia.
Antonio Galloni - 28/06/2013