There’s no question about it, Tignanello gets me excited and Tignanello 2010 gets me really excited. Every year I look forward to tasting the new Tignanello vintage, not just because I know I’ll be tasting a bold, fruity and balanced wine, but because it was one of the very first wines to spark my passion for Italian wine. It’s my special occasion wine of choice and I’ve been lucky enough to enjoy this wine in some of the most romantic and beautiful cities of Italy, from Trastevere in Rome to Piazza Bra in Verona. So, maybe you can tell, I’m quite fond of Tignanello.
However, like a mother’s love for their first child, if he dare to disappoint me, and some 00 vintages have fallen short of the mark, then criticism will pour forth… like bad wine in fact! Luckily, Tignanello 2010, not only fails to disappoint, I regard the 2010 Tignanello as the best vintage I’ve ever tasted. And I’m saying that from my tasting spot, just inside the M25 on a dismal October day, right after a 9.2% gas price increase.
The 2010 Tignanello comprises an 80% Sangiovese, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc blend of grapes from the Tignanello vineyards in the Bolgheri DOC, 400 meters above sea level. The 2010 vintage was far from perfect with a cool growing period and heavy intermittent rains requiring particularly careful selection of the grapes. Tignanello is a remarkably consistent wine, but with the obstacles of the vintage Antinori have to be commended on the creation of such a quality wine against all odds.
For those looking for a fine wine investment, you could do far worse than put your money in Tignanello. Every year I make this recommendation and every year the price of past vintages keeps on growing. The 04 I recommended in 2007 was on sale in the UK for £36.50, today, that price has increased to £158.90 per bottle. Looks worth a punt?
However, the real joy in Tignanello, like any great wine, is to drink it, in great company, on a special occasion or even better, to make an occasion special. I don’t recommend a tartan blanket and a bag of chips as an official accompaniment to this wine but if anyone offers, snatch their hand off.
Tignanello 2010 – Antinori – BUY – £70
Antinori’s 2010 Tignanello has incredible poise and structure yet is so incredibly alive with fruit and drinkability that I have to class this as the best Tignanello for a generation. Opening quite typically with dark cherries, chocolate and ripe plums, the spicey sweetness then takes over with cloves and herbs joining the chorus. This nose really does reveal itself to you in layers and it’s a fascinating wine experience. The palate is a surprise, you’re expecting a sucker punch of extracted flavours and heavy mouth-feel from the aromas that have gone before but instead the palate is much finer, the dark fruit and chocolate flavours are detectable but joined by minerality and sleek perfectly ripe fruit. Rich and persistent, nothing interrupts the pleasure, the tannins and alcohol are all in check and the long, clean finish adds the final note to this superb aria. Stonking. 96 Points
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Best bottle of wine you’ve had in the unlikeliest of places? Bottle and place please?