Antinori Guado al Tasso 2008 Bolgheri DOC Superiore wine review: from Bolgheri with love
Antinori’s Guado al Tasso 2008 Bolgheri DOC Superiore was a wine that we kept in the cellar for many years. Tasted in 2013, it was extremely woody, jammy, intense, and packed with powerful tannins, but still very far from perfect balance, harmony, and the evolved tertiary notes that it can offer today.
It is difficult to keep a bottle in the cellar for 5 years; you constantly want to uncork it to see what we got, and while the wine is still fresh and the tannins are firm and slender, it has certainly managed to transform all that extract, with its dense and tannic thickness, into a much more melodic and harmonious symphony.
First of all, the color is a wonderful garnet. Then the fruit is mature, rich, and dense but never overripe; however, it has lost much of its initial “vinosity.” Even though the wine is still rocky, the tannins have softened and become sharp. Freshness is lively but not so aggressive, less sharp, but above all, it is the tertiary aromas that will intrigue you.
Antinori Guado al Tasso 2008 was born in the eponymous estate in the Maremma’s northwestern corner, less than 100 kilometers from Florence and a stone’s throw from the charming village of Bolgheri. You all know Bolgheri’s history: it is the Italian Bordeaux, the soils are pebbly and slightly calcareous, and winds are coming from the sea, so why not plant Cabernet, Merlot, and Petit Verdot? And since the birth of Sassicaia, the time has passed…
But back to our Antinori Guado al Tasso 2008 Bolgheri DOC Superiore: it is a typically Bordeaux blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Franc, Merlot, and Petit Verdot, so we are dealing with a rich and intense wine; drinking it immediately would be madness. After the harvest of the separate crus, the grapes are pressed and then fermented for 15–20 days, and then the wine is aged in new barrels for 14 months plus 10 months in the bottle.
The result is a wine that today, in 2019, is very fascinating, at times balsamic, spicy, and with warm fruit, but never overripe or jammy; indeed, there is a certain basic austerity that makes it fascinating.
Antinori Guado al Tasso 2008 Bolgheri DOC Superiore bouquet
The nose is still very spicy with notes of tobacco, coffee, and sweet spices, but the fruit begins to emerge with clarity: plums and blueberries in spirit, then undergrowth, fine herbaceous traces, eucalyptus, flowers, and China, which close with licorice and rhubarb. If we want to find something to complain about but not a defect, it is the slightly oppressive smokiness: as a wine, it is crystallized and not very natural in its expressiveness; the aging in cask has shaped it clearly, slowing down its aromatic development. It is a stylistic choice and a matter of taste, but if we always talk about terroir, earth-vine-man-climate-cosmo-karma, and then we model the wine so heavily, everything is reduced to a forced aesthetic search.
The flavor of the Antinori Guado al Tasso 2008 Bolgheri DOC Superiore
Warm, powerful, and broad, but shifting between a successful balance of lively acidity, powerful but fine tannins, and roundness that, as always, remains austere and does not allow the explosive fruit to fade away. Long finish, excellent thickness, the wine is balanced, but with this richness, it could easily age for another ten years.
Antinori Guado al Tasso 2008 Bolgheri DOC Superiore Price
Antinori Guado al Tasso 2008 Bolgheri DOC Superiore food pairings
It is a structured and tannic wine, with Cabernet Sauvignon dominating, so sacrifice grilled meat, pulled pork, brisket, ribs with BBQ sauce, and burgers with melted Brie. But it is also excellent with black truffle risotto, passatelli with Parmigiano fondue and truffle, bucatini all’amatriciana, roast beef, hamburger.