Guado Al Tasso

Vintage

Classification

Bolgheri DOC Superiore

Blend

60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 10% Syrah and other red grape varieties.

Climate

The latter part of winter and the beginining of spring were very mild for the time of the year and also very dry. This produced early budding - some 10 days earlier than average. In April the temperature suddenly dropped, causing an arrest in the growth of the buds. The summer was very hot and sunny and this weather continued for the whole of September and for the duration of the harvest which meant that at the time of picking, the grapes were exceptionally healthy and with a high sugar concentration. Overall the 1997 harvest has been somewhat less than expected in terms of quantity - but in terms of quality, this is an exceptional vintage, probably even better than the much acclaimed 1990 vintage and one of the greatest of the last fifty years.

Vinification

Merlot was harvested at mid September, approximately a week before the Cabernet Sauvignon. After destemming and light crushing, the Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon were vinified separately; maceration took place in stainless steel tanks over a period of 12 days, during which time alcoholic fermentation was also completed, at a temperature never exceeding 30 °C. The resulting wine is very rich in colour, but soft on the palate without any astringency.The wines were then transferred to new French oak barriques (Troncais and Alliers) where malolactic fermentation was completed by the year's end. The wines were then racked, blended and then returned to the barrels for about 14 months aging, followed by bottling and a further 10 months minimum in bottles before release. Alcohol : 13,5% Vol.

Historical data

Guado al Tasso, meaning literally "Badger's Ford", takes its name from a common sight at the estate of #Tenuta Guado al Tasso#, Bolgheri, where it is produced. The vineyard is at an elevation between 44 and 58 metres (145 and 190 feet) above sea-level on stony, slightly calcareous soils. Tenuta Guado al Tasso is located 60 miles southwest of Florence, near the medieval village of Bolgheri, in an area known as the Maremma. The 900 hectares (2,223 acres) estate stretches up from the shore of the Tyrrhenian Sea to the hills, and aside from extensive vineyards, also grows wheat, corn, sunflowers, tomatoes and olive trees. Guado al Tasso was first produced in 1990; the successive vintages are 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995 and 1996. All the vintages have been produced in limited quantities.

Tasting notes

Intensely fruity, more of cherry than cassis, with hints of toast, coffee and dark chocolate. Finely structured and complex; balanced, with soft tannins and a lingering finish. Displays unmistakable varietal flavor while retaining strong regional character.

Awards

"Cinque grappoli"

ASSOCIAZIONE ITALIANA SOMMELIER Oct. 2000 "Duemilavini 2001" Guide

2000 Italy

"Super Tre Stelle"

I VINI DI VERONELLI Oct. 2000 Italian Guide

2000 Italy

89-91/100 score

THE WINE ADVOCATE Feb. 2000 Robert Parker

2000 U.S.A.

96/100 score

WINE SPECTATOR June 2000

2000 U.S.A.