In focus: the fresh face of Tuscany

12th March, 2019 by Lauren Eads

Last year marked the 50th anniversary of the first Super Tuscan wine being released. Depending on your stance, the rebellion that helped propel Tuscan wine into the fine wine stratosphere began with a 1968 Sassicaia, or a 1968 Vigorello from Azienda Agricola San Felice. Both lay claim to the milestone.

Regardless, it marked a turning point in the fortunes of Tuscany. Winemakers didn’t completely turn their backs on the indigenous varieties of Sangiovese, Colorino, Canaiolo, Malvasia Nera and Trebbiano but created a new category that existed outside of appellation laws that allowed for the use of non-indigenous grapes, such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah. This was the Toscana IGT label, and drew on grapes from throughout Tuscany. The Super Tuscans represented the region’s modern face, and were successful in scaling the Liv-ex ladder, offering consumers and collectors a simple and marketable concept that cut through any confusion about their quality. Appellations such as Chianti DOC, Chianti Classico DOCG, Bolgheri DOC, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG and Montepulciano DOCG maintained tradition, but were somewhat left behind.

As Susan Harper, sales and marketing director at Armit Wines, notes:….

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