The release of the ever anticipated Tignanello 2010 can sometimes be overshadowed by the noise of the Bordeaux En Primeur campaign. Super Tuscan wines remain in the ascendancy and Tignanello arguably offers the best value of them all. Last year we released Tignanello 2009 for £235 a half case and it is now trading at around £260 a case. Their 2010 effort does not disappoint and offers an expression of Sangiovesse quite unlike any other wine. It is a blend of 80% Sangiovese, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc. It is vinified in a Bordeaux style, adding Tuscan flamboyance with a Bordeaux classic style, hence creating a wine of super complexity and incredible ageing potential.

Tignanello is unique, maintaining tradition by using Tuscany’s (arguably Italy’s) greatest grape variety, while utilising modern and international wine making methods. It also displays a vintage premium; invariably vintages become more expensive as they age. For example, we are offering the 2010 for £250 per half case (OWC), while the 2004 vintage which is 94 Parker Points trades at £450 and the 1990, £700.

Super Tuscan wines have outperformed the Liv-ex 50 over the last 5 years and Tignanello trades at 50% less than the other leading Super Tuscan names. Therefore, it is undervalued against its peers and a great perennial buy.

TIGNANELLO 2010 £250 6×75 available immediately, OWC IB
Tignanello 2009 – 94 Parker Points £260 6×75 Market Price
Tignanello 2004 – 94 Parker Points £450 6×75 Market Price
Tigannello 1990 – 94 Parker Points £700 6×75 Market Price

Robert Parker has not yet released his tasting note; market sentiment is that the 2010 is at the very least the 2009’s peer, combing excellent ripeness with balanced acidity and a wonderful complete mouth feel.

An intense ruby red in color, the aromas of the wine are characterized by a powerful varietal expressiveness, with ample notes of red fruit, raspberries, and liquorice. On the palate, the wine, still very young, immediately shows firm tannins with much polish and finesse as well, along with a balancing, tonic acidity and savory mineral notes which add length and persistence to the finish and aftertaste. (

A bit of History
Italy fell into the doldrums in the late 19th and mid-20th century, only to be re-ignited in the late 70s, 80s and 90s, by producing modern variations on traditional wines. The most controversial Super Tuscans are named such to denote all Tuscan wines that do not conform to traditional Tuscan winemaking practices and therefore do not fit their DOC or DOCG designations. The main reason for breaking convention was the use of international (predominately Bordeaux blends) grape varieties, as is the case with Sassicaia, Solaia, Ornellaia and Masseto. Today they offer an excellent alternative to Bordeaux at a fraction of the price of First Growths. They also have an extremely strong on-trade (restaurants and hotels) business and are sold in all good Italian restaurants the world over, as well as any other top quality wine list.

Tignanello and the Antinori Family
Tignanello is made by the Antinori family, famous also for Solaia (70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Sangiovese) and Guado al Tasso. However, unlike Solaia and the other aforementioned wines Tignanello is made up predominately (85%) of Sangiovese, the traditional grape variety of Chianti, the splendid Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. In fact Tignanello was the first Sangiovese based wine to be aged in small French oak barrels (normally spending a year in new oak) and unlike the other world famous Super Tuscans, Tignanello is grown in the Chianti Classico designated area (between Greve and the Pesa river valleys), further inland than the coastal Bolgheri, where the grapes get the right amount of sunshine to ripen fully.