Mission Codename Like a Bossi
Superbly cellared as original importer stock, this Super-Tuscan from the highly prized Castelnuovo Berardenga commune with 60% off could be the Italian find of the year Operatives! Even at its release price of $75 the bang for the buck is there, it truly over-delivers in the glass. As a sub-$30 deal though, this is a - drop all you’re doing and stock up now - priority. Think of it as a hypothetical blend of a Brunello on steroids with a classic blue-chip Napa Cab. Just does not get better.
Deep ruby, as close to a blood-red as it can get, with the mildest garnet robe embracing the rim. A gorgeous burst of ripe red cherries captivates with the first whiff, enlaced through baking spices, earthy loam, and savory herbs. On the palate, authoritative tannins emerge through a darker berry personality with cocoa powder and pencil lead. Showing supreme grace, delivering on all cylinders over raw power, this lingers with a vivid impact on the tremendous finish. While it will adorn many a wonderful meal, as a poetic representation of its genre, you might prefer to save this trophy to blow minds in a blind older wine tasting with a Napa Valley focus, it ought to be the best ringer.
The following verse of high praise from none other than Antonio Galloni of Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate and Vinous is, after all, not easily earned; “If asked to name my favorite under the radar estates in Tuscany, Castello di Bossi would occupy a place pretty near the top of that list. In particular, the flagship Corbaia is reliably outstanding and exceptionally fairly priced in today’s market relative to the quality it consistently delivers. I always look forward to tasting the new releases from Castello di Bossi and consulting oenologist Alberto Antonini, they are off the charts. Proprietor Marco Bacci makes a wide range of wines across his properties in Tuscany, but those of Castello di Bossi lead the way when it comes to quality and consistency. These are rich, textured wines that in most cases can handle fairly high amounts of new French oak.”
There you have it. Yet another impossible to replicate deal that is bound to take a fast, short trip down memory lane…
Here’s what the wine press has to say:
94 Points – James Suckling - “A red with lots of dried fruit, chocolate and toasted oak on the nose and palate. Full body, velvety tannins, and a savory finish. Lots of hazelnut character, too.”
93+ Points – Antonio Galloni, Vinous - “The 2012 Corbaia, the estate’s Sangiovese/Cabernet Sauvignon blend, is deep, ferrous and massively constituted. As such, it will need a few years in the cellar to be at its best. Ripe red cherry, chalk, smoke, iron, and sage add further nuance as the wine continues to open up in the glass. Readers should expect a tannic, savory wine built on power. Drink 2018-2032.”
92+ Points – Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate - “You got to hand it to Marco Bacci and the team at Castello di Bossi. This estate has crafted some fine wines in the 2012 vintage, they stand out for their elegance and complexity. The 2012 Corbaia is an exhilarating wine that offers pleasant surprises in a lackluster vintage. The blend is 70% Sangiovese and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon that is aged in French oak for two years. I am delighted by the inner energy and tonic firmness of the mouthfeel. In terms of texture, Corbaia offers unique quality. Dark fruit and integrated spice add a lasting sense of lift and buoyancy. Drink 2017-2017.”
Winemaker Talk – Wine Spectator - *“Italian winemaker makes outstanding wines from Tuscany to Argentina. Tuscany-born winemaker Alberto Antonini is among the most influential consultants from Italy. His credits include Castello di Bossi’s modern reds, as well as Poggio al Tesoro. But his reach extends far beyond his native country. He is also partner and winemaker for Altos Las Hormigas, which makes some of Argentina’s top Malbecs. Antonini studied at the University of Florence in the early- and mid-‘80s, as well as the Université de Bordeaux and later at the University of California, Davis. With an international education, it shouldn’t come as any surprise that today Antonini’s consulting company works with clients from Armenia to South Africa. Despite his globetrotting lifestyle (and the workload that goes with it), however, Antonini is the last to sing his own praises. He’s soft-spoken and prefers to keep a low profile.
Wine Spectator: What was your first vintage in the wine business? Alberto Antonini: 1980 was my first vintage, at my family winery, Poggiotondo, which is located in the Chianti region of Tuscany. I was just helping my father to make the wine. Basically a lot of manual work, like pruning and canopy management in the vineyard, and racking and pumping over in the cellar. It’s what got me interested in being a winemaker.
WS: What wineries did you work at before starting your own consulting business? AA: I was assistant winemaker at Frescobaldi in Tuscany, head winemaker at Col d’Orcia and head winemaker at Antinori.
WS: Who have been your biggest influences as a winemaker? AA: Working for Piero Antinori was a great learning experience. I understood how to combine tradition and innovation in a way to make wine with a strong identity and a sense of place, but also keep in mind what the consumer is looking for.
WS: If you could be one other person in the wine business for one day, who would it be, and why? AA: André Tchelistcheff, who I met a few years before he died. He had such an amazing wine culture and a charm that impressed me very much as a young winemaker. I could spend hours listening to his professional life, his contribution to the development of the concept of quality in Napa Valley, and all he did in his life. A real ‘maestro’ in a broad sense.
What the Winery Says
2012 'Corbaia' Toscana IGT
- Alberto Antonini
- 70% Sangiovese, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon
- Castelnuovo Berardenga, Tuscany
- Corbaia Vineyard
- Calcareous clay-loam
- 24 months
- 100% new French oak