The Inside Story from Italian Wine Merchants

Go-To-Wine Tuesday (one day later…)

Posted on | January 19, 2011 | Written by Will Di Nunzio | No Comments

When first asked to write about a Go-To-Tuesday wine, I found that my mind instantly raced in search of the perfect example. I began thinking of high end producers and how their second, third and sometimes fourth-label wines are often overlooked, but it was my colleague Tara who said to me “You should write about the 2008 Tenuta San Guido Guidalberto!” So here we are. And I can’t pretend to be anything other than really delighted.

From the pioneer Super-Tuscan wine estate, Tenuta San Guido, Guidalberto is a simple blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, with a touch of Sangiovese (45%, 45% and 10%), and San Guido’s second label is a preferred drinking wine by many Bordeaux-blend consumers. Why? Is it just the name behind the wine? The price compared to its older brother Sassicaia or is it really that good? Yes, yes and yes.

In tasting this wine last night, I found that the estate itself has the best description: “un vino privo di spigolature!” – a wine with no corners! The best quality of this wine is how smooth it is. The Merlot and Cab nuances were immediately showing when I uncorked the bottle, but they mellowed considerably in the glass after just five minutes. While I was cooking my grilled chicken and vegetables, I would go back to my glass of wine. Sip after sip, I felt more drawn to the earthy and black cherry aromas; in fact, I nearly finished the bottle because it was so delicious that I didn’t feel the need to have food with it! This “drinkability” is a typical quality of San Guido’s wines, and one of the things that makes this particular Super Tuscan an incredible wine. As with many really well produced wines, it’s one thing to talk about it, and another thing entirely to experience it.

Ok, the wine is $50 a bottle, which means it’s not strictly a “value wine,” the usual topic of this Tuesday column. However, I think this wine is in direct competition with its older brother, Sassicaia, which runs about three times more, for it delivers smooth, tasty, Tenuta San Guido quality. It all depends on how you define “value,” and this was a bottle I enjoyed every moment drinking.

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