Sassicaia

More about Sassicaia

Sassicaia is produced by the Incisa della Rocchetta, a noble Italian family whose history can be traced back to Medieval times. In 1930, Marquis Mario Incisa della Rocchetta married the heiress to the Tuscan estate of Tenuta San Guido in Bolgheri. After the end of Second World War, the Marquis and Marquess moved to the estate. The Marquis was an ardent admirer of fine Bordeaux wine and his vision was to produce grand vin in the same style. In the Tenuta San Guido estate, the Marquis believed that he found the “terroir” that he was searching for to produce this wine. In 1940, he planted the first vineyard of Sassicaia in a plot of land in the estate. In 1965, he planted two more vineyards for Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. These vineyards and other vineyards that he eventually planted in the estate would yield the fruits for the wine to be known by the name of Sassicaia.

The first vintage of Sassicaia to be offered on the open market was 1968. It was well received and it went from strength to strength. The Marquis passed away in 1983 and the operation is now overseen by his son, Marquis Nicolo.

Sassicaia was one of the original Super Tuscans, a moniker given to those wineries who did not make wines from Sangiovese, the indigenous grapes of the region which form the backbone of Chianti, Brunello, etc.. Instead, Sassicaia made a wine from a blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Cabernet Franc. In other words, in the Bordeaux style rather than the classical Italian style. Many who had the pleasure of tasting this wine often find it to be a haunting reminder of a great Margaux, full of perfume and elegant freshness.

Today, the vineyards of Sassicaia sprawls over 75 hectares in different areas around Bolgheri. The vines are 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Cabernet Franc, the same ratio as the blend, and they average 30 years of age. The wines are aged for 24 months in French oak barriques (of which 1/3 of the barrels would be new every year).

Sassicaia makes wine of consistently high quality and it is highly sought after by wine lovers and collectors. Many consider the 1985 vintage to be the greatest wine made by the estate and may be one of the greatest to have come from Italy. Unfortunately, the price of a 1985 would be out of reach for mere mortals. The 1997 vintage is also hailed as a great wine and its price matches its reputation. However, Wine Spectator has noted that the 1998 vintage has been unfairly overlooked. It is selling at a lower price but Wine Spectator gave it a higher score (95) than the 1997 (93) [Robert Parker also gave a higher score to the 1998 (90 v. 87 for the 1997)]. According to Wine Spectator, “(1998) represents an excellent buying opportunity for the collector : a better wine (1998) at almost half the price of the 1997”.

We have the pleasure of offering the 1998 Sassicaia at a price of $1,980 (but we only have 12 bottles).

Read Review of Sassicaia + Nicholini at Conrad at www.wine2match.com