The 2016 vintage in Tuscany follows on from the 2015 in terms of exceptional quality. Akin to Bordeaux, the 2016 vintage could well surpass the 2015, a true great! It is often too facile to compare vintages, yet 2016 is being likened early on in profile to extremely balanced years such as the great 2006, 2008 and 2010 – the modern greats. This morning we are delighted to release one of our favourites, Fattoria Le Pupille Saffredi 2016. James Suckling, whose tasting schedule is always in synchronisation with releases, is the only major critic to release a score to date. His score is a brilliant 99 points, equalling the 2015, only surpassed by the perfect scoring 2012.
He calls the 2016, ‘A glorious Saffredi’ which displays ‘Incredible aromas of dark berries, lavender, rosemary, licorice and dried flowers. Spice. Full body and fantastic tannin texture with great length. Goes on for minutes. Muscular yet wonderfully formed and refined.’ Its exceptional score and price give it a Price over Points ratio (POP) of 35, extremely low for a wine of this renown. The 2016 vintage is one to stock up on in Tuscany and Saffredi 2016 will be one of the gems of the vintage. It has been one of the globe’s leading wines since 2011, with a sequence of scores surpassing the First Growths and leading Cult Californians. James Suckling adorned the 2011 with 95 points, the 2012 with a perfect 100 points, the 2013 with 98 points and recently the 2015 and 2016 with 99 points. These scores have been mirrored by the Wine Advocate, with it receiving 96 points in 2010, 93 in 2011, 95 in 2012 and 96 in 2015. Saffredi is now seen as one of the best priced, leading Italian wines and we sold out of the 2015 on the day of release, we expect the 2016 to follow suit.
Scansano, the capital of Morellino, is an area in Maremma with a noble pedigree in winemaking. Scansano itself is located just south of the large town of Grosseto and benefits greatly from the combination of the welcome breeze of the Tyrrhenian Sea and altitude where the vineyards are located 280 metres above sea level. Maremma is sited just south of Bolgheri located, it benefits from similar terroir and climatic aspects. In the mid-1980s Elisabetta Geppetti made this region famous with her Estate, Le Pupille, which is named after twin hills found around the original six hectares of vineyard. Still in her twenties, Geppetti took the world of wine by storm in the guise of her greatest wine, Saffredi, so named to honour her mentor and Father-in-Law, ‘Fredi’, who previously owned the Estate. Saffredi, which started life as 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, quickly established Geppetti as a winemaking genius and attracted the father of Italy’s Super Tuscan wines, Giacomo Tachis, who began working with Geppetti.
The first vintage was bottled in 1987 and was an immediate success when it was released to market in 1990. Since then, Geppetti has worked hard to increase production in order to meet the heavy international demand, rising from 9,000 to 30,000 bottles, yet this still represents a meagre 2,500 cases – not nearly enough! The vineyard covers four hectares, with a south-eastern exposure, the Merlot vines face northwest; the soil is rich in chalk and ancient skeletal matter. The wine today sees a high percentage of new oak, 80% and 20% in second usage barriques, where it ages for 20 months.
Since the heady days of 100% Cabernet Sauvignon the wine’s composition has changed, in 1993 Merlot was introduced, the blend this year is made up of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 10% Petit Verdot, although this changes every vintage to reflect the very best possible blend, sometimes including Syrah. From 2000 until 2011 the Estate boasted the famous Oenologist, Christian Sommer, who up until 1999 was at Chateau Latour. In 2011, Sommer handed over the reins to Luca D’Attoma, who has already reached new heights with the wonderful perfect scoring 2012 vintage, the 2013, the 2014, 2015 and now the stellar 2016, stretching the qualitative limits of the Estate.
We have a limited amount of cases available to offer today, including single magnums packed in their own case priced at £160 in bond, along with double magnums, priced at £320 and an imperial, priced at £655 in bond.
Offered subject to availability.