Located in central Italy along the Tyrrhenian coast, Tuscany is home to some of the world’s most notable wine regions. Along with the Piedmont, Tuscany is the country’s most important and high-yielding wine area. Perhaps the most famous, Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano (all made with the Sangiovese grape), and Vin Santo (a dessert wine), have been named the "Super Tuscans." They represent a large group of some of Italy’s best red wines born in the early 1970s.
Tuscany is divided into twenty-nine Denominazione di Origin Controllata (DOC) and seven Denominazioni di Origine Controllata e Garantita (DOCG). The regulations imposed by these groups were what brought about the “super Tuscans.” Producers felt restricted and made wines outside DOC/DOCG regulations that were considered to be of high quality—and demanded a high price as a result.
Some producers sought to keep away from using some legally “suggested” grape varieties, like the Italian white grapes which were considered an integral aspect of Chianti. Other winemakers began blending Cabernet and Merlot with indigenous grape varieties, which, at the time in the early 70s, wereforbidden.
While the Tuscany region produces a wide range of excellent wines for wine lovers, some of the more famous Tuscan wines, like Chianti and Brunello, are experiencing a marked decrease in bottles sold. There are many reasons for this; among them: a steep rise in prices recently; the hot Tuscan real estate market pushing some of the more experienced winemakers out; and the influx of oenological consultants who are having a negative impact on the diversity of wines. Fortunately, most recently, this trend may be reversing.
jamessuckling.com, 97 points: Love the nose on this with blackberries sweet tobacco blueberries. Full body with soft and silky tannins and a light jammy finish. Lots of dark fruits. Long finish. Loads going on in this one. Give it three to five years...
jamessuckling.com, 96 points: Very perfumed aromas of ripe fruit such as strawberries and blackberries. Turns to flowers and incense. Full-bodied with fine tannins and a bright citrus aftertaste and ultra-clean fruit. The purity and focus of the wine...
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, 97 points: The 2006 Brunello di Montalcino is an explosive structured wine bursting with dark fruit. It is one of the most inward brooding wines of the vintage. Black cherries menthol spices and new leather are some of the nuances...
Wine Enthusiast, 93 points: This full, plump and generous Cabernet Sauvignon offers loads of ripe fruit, smoothness and intensity. If you love rich, sun-filled red wines from Tuscany, this is a perfect choice. In the mouth, you get firm tannins and...
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