2018 Antinori Cervaro della Sala (750ml)

Chardonnay from Umbria, Italy

B-21 Top Recommendation
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Twenty-six generations of the Antinori family have built upon a family dynasty dating to 1385 when Antinori's ancestors joined the Florentine Guild of Vintners. Having developed estates in Tuscany's finest and most progressive viticultural areas of Montalcino, Chianti Classico and Montepulciano, they turned their sights to Umbria, and the 14th century Castello della Sala in the city of Orvieto. Originally owned by one of the most powerful, noble families of Orvieto, the Monaldeschi – feudatories of Charlemagne, King of the Franks – the Castello della Sala represents the ancient history of Umbria, passing through multiple noble families until being acquired by the Antinori family in 1940.

Fast-forward to 1979, Renzo Cotarella arrived, and, in less than ten years, created the wines which would come to symbolize this historic estate. A famous, professional agronomist, Cotarella launched an ambitious project of varietal substitution; a program aimed at producing white wines of greater personality than those produced in the Orvieto Classico appellation at the time. Chardonnay would become the backbone of Cotarella's new masterpiece, with the local Grechetto grape utilized (10-15%) for balancing acidity.

Cervaro della Sala stands as a benchmark today; a wine which resonates so forcefully within its category that it has become emblematic of the category itself.

96WA

Compared to the 2017 vintage that shows a more accessible and full-bodied style, the 2018 Cervaro della Sala is a classic edition—it's about as classic as I have ever tasted this landmark white from Umbria to be. This cooler vintage prizes finesse and elegance, and those traits are matched by efforts in the winery to accomplish that same goal. On many levels, the 2018 vintage opens a new chapter for Cervaro della Sala, with a stronger emphasis on preserved lemon, crisp pear and crushed mineral. The wine offers beautiful freshness and linearity. I must also mention that this vintage is released while the fruit is still a bit closed or shy. That slightly reductive approach bodes very well for the wine's future evolution.

96 points, Monica Larner, Wine Advocate (Issue # Interim - Oct 2019)

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$54.98
30 bottles in stock. Ships in 1 to 2 business days.

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