In the early twenties in Italy, Mario Incisa della Rocchetta, a lover of French wines and in particular of the great structured red wines of Bordeaux, realized that the territory of the Tyrrhenian coast of the Bolgheri area had many geographical, climate and terrain similarities with the Graves area of Bordeaux. “Graves” in fact means gravel, precisely because of the stony composition of the soils in the French area, just like “Sassicaia” within the San Guido estate they own. So he began to think of a Bordeaux blend produced in that area and began experimenting in the early 1920s, achieving good results, even if the wine was not yet aged for long in oak barrels. In fact, from 1948 to 1967, the Sassicaia remained for strictly private use and consumption on the estate. However, every year, a few cases of wine were left to age in the Castiglioncello cellar. Tasting it, the marquis began to realize that the old vintages, over time, improved significantly, even transforming their defects into virtues. Strong and enthusiastic about these considerations, he invested himself in winemaking techniques and in 1968 the product was placed on the market for the first time, with a welcome worthy of a Bordeaux Premier Cru. In the following years the premises were implemented with the creation of a temperature-controlled cellar, the acquisition of steel vats for fermentation and French oak barriques intended for the elevation and aging of the wines
Cabernet Sauvignon 85%
Cabernet Franc 15%
The 2017 vintage was basically dry in Bolgheri, which nonetheless made it possible to obtain a good product, albeit in smaller quantities. The harvest took place rigorously by hand and in crates and began in the first ten days of September for the Cabernet Franc until it ended at the end of September for those of the C. Sauvignon. The grapes arrived in the cellar still fresh and juicy, already allowing the spontaneous alcoholic fermentations to start. The grapes are further selected on a sorting table and only the best ones will continue the winemaking process. This will be followed by the very soft pressing and destemming of the grapes and an alcoholic fermentation in stainless steel at a controlled temperature of 28-30°C thanks to indigenous yeasts. The macerations are continued for 13-15 days in order to favor the optimal extraction of colours, aromas and tannins, albeit with frequent pumping over. Malolactic fermentation carried out by the wine in steel tanks at the end of November. At the end of fermentation, the wine is placed in French oak barriques for refinement which lasts 24 months. After this period, the blend is created with subsequent refinement of another 12 months in the bottle before being placed on the market.
It has an intense garnet red color with ruby reflections. On the nose the bouquet is explosive, intense, elegant and complex: from notes of ripe fruit and in alcohol such as cherry, plum and blackberry and mulberry jam, vegetable and balsamic notes of mint and eucalyptus, iodized and marine minerality with ample panorama of spices among which we mainly feel vanilla, tobacco, sandalwood, chocolate, licorice. Elegance of succession of extraordinary and exciting aromas. In the mouth the wine is vibrant and young, soft and warm, broad and enveloping, closed by good acidity and velvety tannins. Long and persistent finish, again suggesting spices. Difficult to describe in words.
Is it really important what we combine with such an icon? Able to create an entire wine-growing area, to dictate one of the most popular trends in today’s world and to excite the best palates in the world, Sassicaia is now known as a quality of made-in-Italy all over the world, always the protagonist of auctions of the sector and sought after by collectors from all over the world. Meditation wine by definition, especially if left to rest for a few years in the cellar, it also goes well with the best red meat or game dishes.