They are the most storied Super Tuscans in the world, splashy mixes of powerhouse, broad-shouldered Cabernet Sauvignon and luscious, wild-berry Sangiovese. Four of the five wines have been attracting collector attention for decades, all made by members of the Antinori family. The last, relatively speaking, is a newcomer.
Marco and Maurizio Bacci's Corbaia is drawn off a magnificent property set in the southernmost edge of Chianti Classico. Bracketed by evergreens, the brothers' Castello di Bossi is a sprawling estate of several hundred acres. Just 18 of those acres are farmed to tiny yields for the making of the 20,000-bottle production of Corbaia.
Like Sassicaia and Solaia, everything about the growing of Corbaia is unusual. Exposure is a perfect south-southwest. Set at 1,400 feet in elevation, the hillsides are more reminiscent of Côte-Rôtie or Chambolle-Musigny than most Tuscan slopes, their soils strewn with jagged chunks of limestone. The vineyard work is carried out entirely by hand, employing a spur-pruned cordon system. For years, the proprietors nursed the vines along, turning out solid wines, albeit blends that took a back seat to Tignanello. But not long after the brothers brought in super-enologist Alberto Antonino, Corbaia began reaching new heights. Finally, in 2007, the Baccis put the Antinoris on notice, releasing a rich, exotic blend that brought Robert Parker's Wine Advocate to its knees.
From 2007-2009, Corbaia earned 95, 96, and 95 points respectively, outpointing Sassicaia and Tignanello. The biggest difference between Antonino's Super Tuscan and the rest of Parker's honor roll? About TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTY DOLLARS per bottle!!
The 2009 Corbaia may well be the most brilliant blend ever drawn off these calcareous slopes. Brilliant, deep ruby to the rim with voluptuous aromas of black cherry, crushed blackberry and white pepper, gently framed by new-wood cedar. Richly textured on the attack — the mouthfeel alone is worth the price of admission — packed with sweet red-fruit preserves and sweet spice. If the flavor profile is Burgundian, the finish is textbook Tuscan, braced with dusty tannins.
Just a few dozen cases are on their way stateside. 95 points from The Wine Advocate. $75 on release. $57 this morning on WineAccess.
definitely a mouthful
Nice, but a bit pricey. Probably 3.5 stars.
Good but not as muscular as one might expect a Castello di Bossi from '09. It never opened up.
With flavors of ash and a bitter and acrid finish even 3 hours later, this must have been a bad bottle. It was so bad, I am afraid to open the other bottles in my collection...We tossed it without finishing it. Terrible.
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