While Great Domaines already has a prestigious portfolio, when the iconic Antinori family of Tuscany approached us to assist them to improve their footprint in South Africa it was an opportunity we couldn’t refuse.
As most serious wine lovers will know, Marchesi Antinori is one of the most famous names in Italian wine with an history going back to 1385, encompassing twenty-six generations of wine makers. Piero Antinori has done some ground-breaking work in the last 25 years, ushering the “Super Tuscan” revolution. Their flagship wine, the Tignanello is considered one of the world’s greatest wines. It was first produced in 1971 and caused sensation by adding Cabernet Sauvignon in a Sangiovese blend and by aging it in small French barrique.
The Antinori family is well known for their sense of innovation and commitment to the highest quality, and they believe “Each vintage, each plot of land, each new idea to be advanced is a new beginning, a new pursuit for achieving higher quality standards”. As Marchese Piero loves to say: “Ancient family roots play an important part in our philosophy but they have never hindered our innovative spirit.”
“This is a huge opportunity for us to share with South African wines lovers, friends and customers, some of the best Italian wines” says Derek Kilpin, Co – owner of Great Domaines. “we are going to focus on the top end of the Antinori portfolio and distribute Solaia, Guado al Tasso and Tignanello” he adds. Our first shipment has just arrived. As these wines are limited, we suggest that you contact us as soon as possible to request your allocation.
About Marchesi Antinori
The Antinori family has been committed to the art of winemaking for over six centuries since 1385 when Giovanni di Piero Antinori became a member, of the “Arte Fiorentina dei Vinattieri”, the Florentine Winemakers’ Guild. All throughout its history, twenty-six generations long, the Antinori family has managed the business directly making innovative and sometimes bold decisions while upholding the utmost respect for traditions and the environment.
Today, Albiera Antinori is the president of Marchesi Antinori with the continuous close support of her two sisters, Allegra and Alessia, all actively involved in the business. Their father, Marchese Piero Antinori, is the current Honorary President of the company. Tradition, passion, and intuition are the three driving forces that led Marchesi Antinori to establish itself as one of the most important winemakers of elite Italian wine.
The Tignanello estate is in the heart of Chianti Classico, in the rolling hillsides between the Greve and Pesa river valleys. It extends over an area of 319 hectares (788 acres), of which 127 (313 acres) are dedicated to vines. Two of the estate’s prized vineyards are on the same hillside, Tignanello and Solaia, on soils that originated from marine marlstone from the Pliocene period rich in limestone and schist.
The estate’s two signature wines, Solaia and Tignanello, are produced from these vineyards and have been defined by the international press as “among the most influential wines in the history of Italian viticulture”. According to Marchesi Antinori, Solaia and Tignanello are an ongoing challenge and a never-ending passion.
The Tignanello estate has vineyards of indigenous Sangiovese grapes as well as some other untraditional varieties such as Cabernet Franc.
The Antinori family produced this wine for the first time in the year 1978, and the initial blend was 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 20% Cabernet Franc, a formula repeated in 1979 as well. In the following years, 20% of Sangiovese was introduced and certain adjustments were also made in the rapport between Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc until the current blend was settled upon. Solaia is produced only in exceptional vintage, and was not produced in 1980, 1981, 1983, 1984, and 1992.
Tignanello was the first Sangiovese to be aged in barriques, the first contemporary red wine blended with untraditional varieties (specifically Cabernet) and one of the first red wines in the Chianti Classico region that didn’t use white grapes. Tignanello is a milestone. It’s produced with a selection of Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc.
Tenuta Guado Al Tasso
The Guado al Tasso estate is located in the small but prestigious 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 1000 hectares (2500 acres); 320 (790 acres) of which are planted with vines. The remainder is covered with fields of wheat, sunflowers and olive groves, set in a beautiful plain encircled by rolling hillsides known as the “Bolgheri Amphitheatre” due to its particular shape.
The vineyards are planted to 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.
A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and occasionally a small amount of Petit Verdot to best represent the complexity and elegance of the Bolgheri terroir. This wine has been produced since 1990 from vineyards on alluvial soils whose composition ranges from clay-sand to clay-loam with rocky deposits known as “scheletro”.